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2015 Mock Drafts: Shane Ray To The Redskins?

Posted Jan 29, 2015

In his latest mock draft, ESPN.com's Todd McShay believes the Washington Redskins will take Missouri defensive end Shane Ray with the No. 5-overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.

Each week leading up to the NFL Draft this year, Redskins.com will be bringing back its "Mock Madness," a compilation of what pundits and various media members believe the Redskins should/could do with their No. 5-overall pick.

Here's an extended look into ESPN's Todd McShay's latest mock draft pick selection for the Redskins:

While outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan has certainly solidified himself as one of the most important players on the Redskins' defense -- recording a career-high 13.5 sacks and NFL-best five forced fumbles in 2014 -- ESPN’s Todd McShay believes the team needs more of a pass-rush threat on the inside.

In his latest mock draft McShay once again thinks Missouri defensive end Shane Ray should be picked up by the Redskins with the No. 5 pick in this year’s draft (ESPN Insider subscription is needed to view the full article).

Ray, who earned SEC Defensive Player of the Year honors in 2014, recorded a Missouri record 14 sacks last season.

Even dating back to the 2013 season, McShay saw Ray as the best player on a talented Missouri defense.

“I studied the Missouri defense on tape a lot during last season's draft process, and it was Ray who jumped out on tape as the most talented player on a front that included Kony Ealy and Michael Sam,” he said. “He is an absolutely relentless pass-rusher who is tough, aggressive, can bend the end and has an explosive first step. He's also versatile and has improved his ability to convert speed to power.”

McShay continues by saying that with the uncertainty surrounding Brian Orakpo's future, Ray could help strengthen the pass rush immediatley

"The Redskins need a pass-rusher...and Ray is a terror off the edge," he writes. "He is relentless at pressuring the quarterback, combining outstanding first-step quickness, effective hands and impressive redirect skills. He also continues to get stronger versus the run and has bulked up into the 250-pound range. He was incredibly productive at Mizzou, finishing fifth in the FBS with 13 sacks last season. This is another spot where Mariota could come under consideration, but I've got Washington addressing its defense here."

Ray’s NFL.com profile lists the 6-foot-3, 245 pounder as an “explosive athlete in every sense.”

“Has elite power for his size and explodes off the line like a coiled spring. Rushes passer with extreme passion and purpose. Has fast, violent hands with advanced understanding of how to use them. Tough and plays with bad intentions on each snap. Uses rip to get under linemen and out-leverage them. Played 4-3 defensive right end in base but rushed from three-technique in some sub-packages. Once he gets to blocker's edge, they struggle to recover and redirect. Rare ability to post inside leg and get his body turned sharply and quickly around it toward quarterback. Excellent change-of-direction talent. Has natural coordination of head fakes, footwork and hand usage in pass rush. Works hard to stand his ground against power. Has power in upper body and hips to punch and dispatch with tight ends against run. Rarely runs past the arc as a rusher and will fight to come back underneath if he gets on the high side. Was able to drop into space with no issues when asked."

In terms of an NFL comparison, NFL.com lists former Redskin Chris Clemons as one player in particular whom Ray plays like.

Clemons – who spent his first three seasons with the Redskins from 2003-05 – has 66 career sacks.

NFL.com BOTTOM LINE: It's hard to find many weaknesses for Ray. He pursues the quarterback and the ball like it's his last snap. An alpha male packaged in an explosive frame, Ray has the traits and skills to be a dominant pass rusher and potential Pro Bowler. He also has the athleticism and strength to play in any defensive front.

RELATED LINKS:
--Mel Kiper Jr. Likes Randy Gregory To The Redskins
--Bucky Brooks Peggins Landon Collins At No. 5
--Rob Rang Sees Tackle Brandon Scherff As A Fit At No. 5  

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