While most mock drafts have the Redskins taking a defensive player, MMQB.com's Ryan Mays thinks Washington may select Alabama center Ryan Kelly.
Will Washington Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan once again take a big, bruising offensive linemen in the first round of the NFL Draft?
Mays notes that his mock draft is based on team need, and with Kory Lichtenstieger turning 31 later this month and
“Washington has plenty of questions along the defensive line, but Jay Gruden’s offense also finished dead last in rushing DVOA last season. Kelly is both nasty and a technician, and along with Derrick Henry was at the center (ha!) of a devastating Alabama running game,” Mays writes.
Rushing DVOA (defense-adjusted value over average) is statistic used by FootballOutsiders.com.
Kelly was a three-year starter at center for the Crimson Tide after All-American Barrett Jones left for the NFL, appearing in 46 games over that span.
During his senior season in 2015, Kelly -- who stands at 6-foot-4 and weighs 311 pounds -- was selected as the Rimington Trophy Award winner and earned consensus first-team All-American honors, as he was the centerpiece for an offensive line that paved the way for a rushing attacked that ran for almost 200 yards per game.
While he was stout against opposing defenses, Kelly was also disciplined, as he was called for just one penalty all season.
As a junior in 2014, Kelly started 12 games at center and was part of an offensive line that allowed just 16 sacks on the year while helping the unit collect nearly 485 yards of total offense per game.
The West Chester, Ohio, product also did not allow a sack.
Kelly started nine games as a freshman as he built a chemistry with incumbent starting quarterback A.J. McCarron.
According to his NFL.com draft profile, Kelly is a “Heady player with tons of grit and fight.”
“Shows the toughness to scrap it out against nose guards in an odd front. Fluid mover in space with knee bend and athletic hips. Explodes into down blocks with low pads and decent bend. Looks to latch and lift with hip snap. Rarely penalized over the last two seasons. Diligent off the snap in race to the spot before engaging on reach blocks. Will keep working feet and hips in order to secure and maintain position. Uses good hand placement and hand strength. Battles to stay glued to his block. Block finisher who looks to dole out punishment on double team blocks. Didn't just secure blocks, helped to blow holes open for Crimson Tide rush game. Handles twists well in pass rush and able to maintain pocket depth against bullrush. Comes with a pedigree of success and mental toughness. Undisputed leader of a physical, well-oiled machine up front,” his profile states.