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Scot McCloughan Knows Who He Wants To Draft In The First Round


Let's just get this out of the way.

No, Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan will not provide the name of who he believes he will select (if he's available) at this year's NFL Draft. But he does have somebody in mind. 

"Hopefully he's not gone," he said. "But I'm adding the same kind of guy. Toughness, smarts, competitiveness, team. The whole thing."


In a recent Q&A with Bleacher/Report]( conducted at this year's annual owner's meetings, McCloughan opened up about many things – more of his philosophies, stories about Frank Gore, Trent Williams and getting stuck in the snow – offering insight and confirming what he has already said about how he evaluates talent at the college and NFL level.

In one particularly "inside baseball" portion of the conversation, McCloughan references his desire to draft "reds" and "blues," colors that delineate the value of a player.

"Blues are like perennial Pro Bowl players," he said. "Reds are like really good football players."

He elaborated.

"If you're lucky, you have four or five blues and hopefully one of those is your quarterback. If you have another 30 who are reds, starters, solid backups, core special teams guys, then you have a chance. That's how you build your roster. That's how you build a team. That comes from this and this [points to his head and heart]. It's not about speed guys and the ESPN guy, the prettiest guy running around making plays. It's a football player. You get enough football players, they're going to fight together."

There shouldn't be any eyebrow raises with that kind of response. McCloughan has made it clear this is the way he constructs a football team.

Just look at this next passage describing the impact of Brandon Scherff, who played all but one snap in 2015 as a rookie and set the tone for the way the team would finish their division-winning season.

"Everybody said Brandon Scherff was taken too high, he's a guard now and he's the fifth pick in the draft. I said, 'Are you kidding me?' He played every snap in the season but one. The only reason he missed one is because his shoe fell off and to this day he yells at me about it. That's the only snap he missed all year. He would have played the whole season, every snap. He's not the most flashy guy, he's not the prettiest guy, but he's a football player and that's what I'm talking about with a red. Now, he might be a blue in two years, three years, who knows. But right now he's a red. He's a core guy and, all of sudden, guys walk in next year and see him, they'll be like, 'OK, that's how we act. That's how we lift weights, that's how we condition, that's how we go to meetings, that's how we practice.' Guys walk in and they're scared of him. Trent Williams is scared of him and he's a Pro Bowler. Trent said, 'I don't want to mess with that guy.' And [Scherff] is a rookie, but that's what starts building a culture. He's a red. You wait and see who we take at 21 in the draft this year. He's a red."

I would recommend reading the entire conversation – including the part about Kirk Cousins' wife Julie hugging McCloughan for what he said was 10 minutes after her husband accepted the team's franchise tag and signed the tender.

McCloughan said he'd like 12 draft picks this year – just him being greedy. But it falls in line with his thinking.

"I tell the scouts all the time," McCloughan said, 'Look, the first round is important, don't get me wrong. We have to nail the guy in the first round. But I want to nail the guys in the fourth round on down and in college free agency.'"




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