The Washington Redskins continue to scout offensive line prospects in the hopes of filling the need the team has at the left guard position. Reportedly, they have met with Braden Smith of Auburn.
It’s no secret that one of the biggest holes left on the Redskins roster is at the left guard position. Currently, the team’s top options there are Arie Kouandjio and the recently re-signed Tony Bergstrom. Considering that neither started the season with the Redskins last year and both remained on the free agent market into October, that won’t do a lot to inspire confidence in the Redskins’ coaching staff.
It seems likely, if not, probable, that the Redskins will address the guard position in the upcoming 2018 NFL Draft. The class of offensive tackles isn’t a particularly strong one, but there are a lot of candidates to play the interior of the line effectively. The Redskins have already scheduled a meeting with Ohio State’s Billy Price, but he’s not the only Day 2 option the team will consider.
According to Draft Analyst’s Tony Pauline, Braden Smith has recently visited the Washington Redskins, among other teams. Here’s what Pauline said about Smith in recent draft notes he published for his site.
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Braden Smith of Auburn is a name I haven’t heard a lot about recently, and he’s flying under the radar. Smith entered the season rated by NFL scouts as one of the top offensive tackles from the senior class. He’s a smart, tough lineman with a great deal of versatility. Smith, who presently grades as a late second-round or early third-round pick on our tackle board, has lined up at both tackle and guard in college. His recent visits have included the Carolina Panthers, Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins. All three teams view Smith as a guard.
Smith is a sensible target for the Redskins. While the team doesn’t currently have a third round pick, the team could elect to trade down from their first or second round pick to add some extra assets. If they do that, Smith would be a good target in Round 3, or even late in Round 2 if they trade down from their first round pick.
With Washington, Smith would be a plug-and-play starter at guard with the option to play outside if needed. That versatility will be valued by the Redskins, especially after the injury woes the team dealt with last year. Smith has good size at 6-foot-6, 315 pounds, really good length, and figures to be a solid pro. Getting him would be a solid move for the Redskins.
Right now, Smith is just one in the pool of many options the Redskins will have with their Round 2 pick. If he impressed the team during their visit, he may end up being their preferred Day 2 interior lineman. Only time will tell where he falls in the team’s prospect rankings.