The Washington Redskins selected Nebraska offensive guard Spencer Long with the 78th pick in the third round of the 2014 NFL Draft. I felt as though guard might be a position that the Redskins would draft a player at with one of their top picks, but Spencer Long wasn’t one of the players I thought they might draft.
There were other players rated much higher on the board at the time the Redskins picked Long, like Notre Dame nose tackle Louis Nix, and Mississippi State guard Gabe Jackson. But the Redskins must have really liked what they saw out of Long, because they took him in the third round when he was rated as a late round pick.
The Redskins moved starting left guard Kory Lichtensteiger to center, and they signed free agent Shawn Lauvao to take his place there. The returning starter at right guard Chris Chester struggled in pass protection for most of last season, so one would assume that Spencer Long is being brought in to if not compete to start at right guard.
I don’t doubt that Long can be a good player for the Redskins, as I’m sure the scouts know what they are looking at and GM Bruce Allen was comfortable with taking Long. But the fact remains the Redskins more than likely could have gotten Spencer Long at least a full round later than where they took him.
The draft is about gaining value. You see how the 49ers draft? It’s all about value. The Redskins could have waited until at least the top of the fourth round to take Long, and taken a player with higher value at pick 78. The lack of value with this pick lowers the grade.