It seems all but certain the Redskins will select Chase Young with the No.2 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. However, if the team does choose to explore other options, could the Lions be a surprise suitor in a trade-back scenario?
Chase Young is justifiably the No. 1 defensive prospect in the 2020 NFL Draft. Young didn’t participate in any drills at the combine with his current draft stock at an all-time high, yet his film from Ohio State speaks for itself. The Redskins would surely benefit from his services, especially with Jack Del Rio’s anticipated 4-3 scheme he plans to implement.
But the question still remains: If the Redskins opt to explore what they could receive for the No. 2 pick, what move would make sense and provide substantial value in return?
One potential answer to this question brings me to the Detroit Lions, who sit directly behind the Redskins with the No. 3 pick. While much analysis around trade-back scenarios has revolved around quarterback-hungry teams looking to secure the second overall pick, there has been less attention paid to how desperately Detroit needs to fill their pass rushing void.
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As it stands today, the most probable outcome is that Washington does indeed select Chase Young, thus eliminating the chance of Young ever becoming a Lion. So, what could be more valuable for Washington than trading back with, say, the Dolphins who could offer another late first-round pick?
Detroit owner Bob Quinn has said publicly that Darius Slay could be a trade candidate, adding that “We’ve had conversations with other teams,” per Benjamin Ravens of MLive.com. Could one of those teams be our beloved Redskins?
As Lions Wire writer Danny Bennett notes, Slay has defended 104 passes during the past 2013, and that’s the most of any defender since 2013. Slay has also been selected to the last three Pro Bowls and was an All-Pro in 2017.
The Redskins have an obvious need at cornerback due to the departure of Josh Norman and the reported trade request from Quinton Dunbar. Slay would provide an upgrade, but he is due to make $12 million in the last year of his contract and will likely be pursuing a raise at the end of the 2020 season.
The Lions have the No. 35 pick in the second round, while the Skins do not currently have a second-round pick. Could a scenario play out where the Redskins trade back to the No. 3 spot, with the Lions offering Darius Slay, the No. 35 pick and a 2021 early-round pick sprinkled on top? Some would argue this package is unrealistic from Detroit’s perspective. However, with Tua Tagovailoa and Chase Young presumably being available, the No. 2 pick this year warrants a deal with some creativity.
If the argument is that Chase Young would bring the most value to the Redskins defense over any other individual player in the draft, I fully agree with that. However, I would argue that drafting the most coveted linebacker (Isaiah Simmons) or cornerback (Jeff Okudah), paired with All-Pro Darius Slay would fill immediate positions of need with top-tier talent. And did I mention that the Redskins would also have another pick near the beginning of the second round?
Or Washington could simply take a generational pass rushing talent in Chase Young and be more than happy doing so. They definitely have options ahead of the draft.