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Posted Feb. 22, 2010

The Top Five Reasons the Redskins Won't Pass on Jimmy Clausen

Most of the time in my 2010 NFL Mock Draft, I've had Jimmy Clausen as my No. 1 overall pick. I'm still not extremely confident Clausen will go the Rams at No. 1 because Sam Bradford and Ndamukong Suh are certainly in that pick range. However, Clausen is falling out of the top four in too many 2010 NFL Mock Drafts. Here is why the Washington Redskins will not pass up Jimmy Clausen if he is on the board:

5. New Regimes Mean New Quarterbacks. It just holds up. Daniel Snyder didn't hire general manager Bruce Allen and head coach Mike Shanahan to do the same things that Jim Zorn did. This staff has no ties or loyalty to Jason Campbell who seems to have worn out his welcome in Washington. He improved last year, but I really think this organization wants a fresh start and the face of the franchise. The Redskins will take either Jimmy Clausen or Sam Bradford if either are on the board.

4. Daniel Snyder Loves Big Names and Superstars. Snyder has a big ego. He has traded draft picks in the past for big-name players. He doesn't mind paying tons of money to free agents who aren't worth it because he has more money than God and he operates his organization like a fan. Snyder wants someone who can handle being the face of the franchise and nobody in this draft can do that better than Jimmy Clausen.

Clausen has been in the spotlight since he was in middle school. He was the No. 1 prospect in the country coming out of the prep ranks and certainly lived up to that hype at one of the most scrutinized programs in America in Notre Dame. Clausen is a household name and he has a superstar's personality.

Sam Bradford returned to school for his junior year and there are questions as to how much adversity he really faced in college in a shotgun-spread, no-huddle offense against Big XII defenses. Jimmy Clausen has been a big name his whole career as the younger brother of two collegiate quarterbacks and he certainly fits the Daniel Snyder mold.

3. Bruce Allen Drafted Aqib Talib. Talib was really the only character concern Bruce Allen took a chance on during his time with the Buccaneers. Talib certainly had character concerns coming out of Kansas, but Tampa had him in the top 10-15 of their board and Allen decided he was worth the risk. Jimmy Clausen certainly doesn't come with the drug concerns Talib had coming out of Kansas and nobody thinks Clausen is a "bad person" - I am just pointing out that Allen didn't take South Florida's Mike Jenkins over Talib. He's done it before and he will do it again.

2. Daniel Snyder Pursued Trade for Jay Cutler. He clearly had no problem with Cutler's past in Denver, so why would he be scared off by Jimmy Clausen? Clausen certainly has some similar traits to Cutler's personality among NFL scouts, which is a huge reason why he doesn't have much hype to go No. 1 overall at the moment. I don't think Dan Snyder really cares what his regional scouts think. Snyder wants to win and if he is pursuing a trade for Jay Cutler, I see no reason as to why he wouldn't take Clausen at No. 4 overall.

1. Mike Shanahan's Draft History in Denver. It's like he was stealing information from the Cincinnati Bengals' war room. Five names come immediately to mind: Jay Cutler, Brandon Marshall, Jarvis Moss, Marcus Thomas and Maurice Clarett. Cutler had a bit of an abrasive personality coming out of Vanderbilt and some considered him the best quarterback in the 2006 NFL Draft. Brandon Marshall certainly had huge character concerns and we know a lot of those were legit. Jarvis Moss was known for having a poor work ethic and taking off plays at Florida. Marcus Thomas got into trouble with the law quite a bit while at Florida, but they still managed to spend a fourth-round pick on him. And certainly the most infamous name on this list is Clarett.

I believe Jimmy Clausen's "character concerns" are really being exaggerated by the media. Part of it is that he played for Notre Dame - I think a lot of that Notre Dame hatred is out there. No, I'm not a Notre Dame fan and I'm not Catholic, so don't call me biased. Clausen is a highly competitive quarterback with an extremely good work ethic and he is tough as nails. I think he has extremely good intangibles and when you look at Philip Rivers winning over his teammates in San Diego, I think Clausen will have no problem wherever he goes.

Assuming you read all five of these reasons as to why Jimmy Clausen won't make it out of the top four picks, I have a hard time believing that someone would debate me on it, outside of the "Draft-Analyst-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named" from ESPN.

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