Redskins will regret passing on QB Nathan Peterman in NFL Draft
By Ian Cummings
It’s unclear why the Redskins passed on Peterman.
Maybe they genuinely felt that the players they selected were better. Which is fine. But it isn’t smart. The Redskins’ starter has a 1 in 500,000 chance of returning to the team next season. Their backup is serviceable, but nothing more than a bridge quarterback. And their third developmental quarterback has done little “developing” in his time with the burgundy and gold.
Peterman compared favorably to Kirk Cousins coming out of college. So much so that NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein pegged Cousins as Peterman’s closest comparison in the league today. He’s average, athletically. He’s not fast, or quick, or agile. But he’s not Tom Brady the turtle either. He’s sufficient, and passing the football, he’s very calm, calculated, and surprisingly crisp with his throws.
The professional game isn’t just about traits. But they’re a big part of the equation. And Peterman’s traits suited the Redskins very well. He’d fit the system. And judging by his performance so far in Buffalo, he’d already be ahead of Nate Sudfeld on the depth chart.
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Now, the Redskins are in an uncertain situation. When Cousins inevitably leaves next year, the team will likely turn to Colt McCoy as a bridge starter. With still too many holes at skill positions, and because more will likely open up next year in free agency, the team can’t afford to go quarterback with their first round pick.
2018’s class is a deep one for quarterbacks, but in a league where the win-now mentality reigns supreme, the Redskins whiffed on an opportunity to have a young, capable starter in place of Cousins in 2018. Now, they’ll be stuck with McCoy playing a Brian Hoyer-like role. And Sudfeld, a former sixth round pick, will theoretically continue his development. But despite how far up he stands on the field, he appears to have little upside. He has a big arm and an impressive 6-foot-6 frame, but little success to show for those physical gifts.
The Redskins can rebound from a missed selection. But they can’t easily sustain their recent success without continuity at quarterback. Peterman is the quarterback the Redskins needed to account for Kirk Cousins’ likely departure in 2018. With Peterman, the Redskins would be able to hire from within, and roll with him for the foreseeable future. Now, it appears Colt McCoy will simply be a placeholder while the Redskins search for their next franchise quarterback to boot.
Peterman could have been “the guy” for the Redskins. The player who could have made the loss of Cousins sting less with experience in the system and traits that liken him to that Cousins as well. Instead, the Redskins opted to waste both of their opportunities to select Peterman.
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The selections weren’t terrible. The team needed more depth at both the position of safety and tight end. And they got that with those two picks. But in their apparent quest to find and acquire promising traits prospects, they may have missed the most important traits prospect of all.