Washington Redskins Rookie Forecast 2024

Jayden Daniels, QB

Solid Starter

Johnny Newton, DT, Illinois – Round 2

After Washington traded Montez Sweat and Chase Young, the Redskins were in the market for some defensive end help. New head coach Dan Quinn brought in some veteran free agents he’s coached in previous stops, but many thought Washington would add more end talent in the draft. Instead, the Redskins chose to bolster the defensive tackle position by taking Newton early in the second round.

As a pass rusher, Newton is impressive. He is athletic and twitchy at the point of attack with a burst to fire his gap. With developed strength and active hands, Newton will slap hands off of him and use his speed to dart past blockers. He has a real burst to close and there is no doubt that Newton is a fast interior rusher. He has fluid hips to slide away from blockers and dart into openings to get after the quarterback. While Newton has a stocky build, he can run fast for a big man. As a pro, Newton has the potential to be an excellent interior pass rusher who produces some quality sack numbers while contributing several hits, pressures, and hurries that could help set up his edge rushers to get sacks as well.

In the ground game, Newton looked better in 2022 than he did in 2023. In his final season, he was worse but in both years there were times when he got absolutely destroyed by offensive linemen. There were plays where he was pushed out of his gap and pushed around the field. At 6-foot-2, 295-pounds Newton has a short, stocky, sawed-off build that lacks length to help him as a run defender.

Veteran tackles Daron Payne and Jonathan Allen are the starters for the 2023 season, but before too long Allen might be a trade candidate as he is aging and expensive. The Redskins could groom Newton behind those veterans for some time and then have him ready to start.

2023: Quan Martin, S
2022: Phidarian Mathis, DT
2021: Sam Cosmi, OT
2020: Antonio Gandy-Golden, WR
2019: Dwayne Haskins, QB
2018: Da’Ron Payne, DT
2017: Ryan Anderson, LB
2016: Josh Doctson, WR
2015: Preston Smith, DE
2014: Trent Murphy, DE
2013: Phillip Thomas, S

Most Likely To Bust

Ben Sinnott, TE, Kansas State – Round 2


After getting rid of veteran Logan Thomas, Washington needed to find some tight end help in the 2024 NFL Draft. Taking Sinnott in the second round was a bit of reach for some others, but Washington valued him there and look at Sinnott as their future starter. Sinnott is capable of contributing as a blocker and has some receiving ability, but his skill set is not special and he is more of a No. 2 tight end candidate. As a second-round pick, Sinnott should be a long-term starter but I could see where they want a more dynamic receiver as a three down starter. I do not think Sinnott will be a bust, but I think he could be a disappointment and might not ever be more than a solid No. 2.

2023: Ricky Stromberg, C
2022: Brian Robinson, RB
2021: Benjamin St-Juste, CB
2020: Antonio Gibson, RB
2019: Wes Martin, G
2018: Troy Apke, S
2017: Monte Nicholson, S
2016: Su’a Cravens, S
2015: Matt Jones, RB
2014: Spencer Long, G
2013: Chris Thompson, RB

Potential Boom Pick

Jayden Daniels, QB, LSU – Round 1

Washington has needed a franchise quarterback since Alex Smith was injured, and new general manager Adam Peters went about filling the hole in his first draft guiding the franchise. In Daniels, Peters added a game changer that is capable of generating huge point totals with dynamic dual-threat ability. Daniels has boom pick potential for the NFL.

As a passer, Daniels has a lot of ability for the next level. While he is generally accurate, he will miss some passes but overall he is an accurate passer. His accuracy might be described as good but not elite. Regularly Daniels throws some great passes locating the ball well and leading his receiver to make the catch and pick up additional yards. Daniels lofts in some beautiful passes downfield and his deep ball accuracy is exceptional. When Daniels sees a receiver break free downfield, he will put excellent touch on the ball to drop it in with a very catchable pass for his receivers. Entering the next level, Daniels’s natural deep ball accuracy is very impressive.

There is no doubt that Daniels can get rhythm and get the ball out on time. Daniels is patient, but he does not have a problem of holding the ball too long like some other college quarterbacks. LSU head coach Brian Kelly developed Daniels well and he showed immense improvement operating as a pocket passer who can work through his progressions and get the ball out to the right receiver.

Daniels has a quality arm and can push the ball vertically, but he does not just fire fastballs, as he throws a very catchable ball. Daniels demonstrates excellent feel, lofting in touch passes and not throwing a flat ball. He is an aggressive quarterback who challenges defenses downfield.

Overall, Daniels does a good job of protecting the football and avoiding interceptions. He typically makes good decisions, and does not regularly provide a defense with the opportunity to take the ball away. Daniels is not careless with the ball as a runner and his ball security is an asset entering the NFL.

Like any college quarterback, Daniels has things to work on. While he is generally accurate, he will miss some passes that should be completions. Sometimes he will have a stretch of some passes being a bit behind but not too far off for an incompletion. Daniels also needs to learn to anticipate receivers coming open. At LSU he had to see his receivers get open before pulling the trigger and in the NFL he needs to improve on anticipating that his receiver is about to separate from coverage.

In terms of his ability on the ground, Daniels reminds me of this analyst of Lamar Jackson in terms of explosive speed, cutting ability, and elusiveness. Daniels is very fast for a quarterback and he will run away from defenders. Daniels also is elusive as a runner as he will juke and dodge defenders to accelerate into space. On top of his feet and quickness, Daniels has a sturdy build that gives him the strength to take hits. However, as a pro, he must learn to slide as he was too physical as a runner. There is no doubt that Daniels has to slide more to cut down on his injury risk. In the NFL, Daniels could be a running threat like Lamar Jackson is for the Ravens.

Daniels could be a boom pick for Washington and finally give them the franchise quarterback that they have so desperately needed.

2023: Emmanuel Forbes, CB
2022: Jahan Dotson, WR
2021: Jamin Davis, LB
2020: Chase Young, DE
2019: Montez Sweat, DE
2018: Derrius Guice, RB
2017: Jonathan Allen, DT
2016: Kendall Fuller, CB
2015: Brandon Scherff, G
2014: Morgan Moses, OT
2013: David Amerson, CB

Future Depth Player

Luke McCaffrey, WR, Rice – Round 3

The Redskins have their starting receivers set with Terry McLaurin and Jahan Dotson, but Washington was in need of some depth betting them. McCaffrey can come in and compete with the likes of Dyami Brown and Jamison Crowder to be the third receiver. McCaffrey might lack the physical talent to be an outside starter in the NFL, but I think he could be a nice rotational receiver that contributes out of the slot. Washington will probably need to draft a true No. 1 outside receiver for Jayden Daniels in the next year or two. McCaffrey could end up being a nice rotational backup wide receiver.

2022: Sam Howell, QB
2021: Dyami Brown, WR
2020: Saahdig Charles, OT
2019: Terry McLaurin, WR
2018: Tim Settle, DT
2017: Jeremy Sprinkle, TE
2016: Nate Sudfeld, QB
2015: Martrell Spaight, LB
2014: Lache Seastrunk, RB
2013: Brandon Jenkins, OLB