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Behind Enemy Lines

Up Next on Mythbusters: The Real Price of Late Season Wins

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Two blogs in two days? Holy Word docx Batman, what's gotten into Neo?

RGIII, that's what.

There is a lot of talk right now about records, specifically wins and losses, and the impact on what we did last week with the Rams when we traded up to #2. So let’s look at it, shall we?

The Skins started the year off 3-1 and looked good so we will start with the idea that 3 wins was the minimum we could have had last season. It was at this point that the wheels started to look shaky before coming completely off. As the season wore on there were more and louder calls for the team to lose out in order to get the highest draft position possible.

For the record, I seem to recall opinions on this matter being split pretty evenly and I was on the side of winning as many games as we could. Just figured I would make my position plain from the outset.

As everyone knows, we finished the season with two late wins, Week 12 in Seattle and Week 15 in NY. These are the two games that people are pointing to that “hurt” us as far as draft position is concerned. Had we lost those two games we would have finished 3-13 and tied with Minnesota and due to strength of schedule the Redskins would have ended up with the 3rd pick in the draft.

I can hear some of out there right now saying “Ha! See! We would not have had to trade to get RGIII if we had lost those games because the Rams were never going to draft him anyway.”

Myth #1 – We could have had RGIII with just our first round pick if we had only lost those two late games to Seattle and NY.

I think that logic is totally faulty. Griffin was already on a number of team’s radar as QB #1a to Andrew Luck’s #1. He was already a hot commodity and in demand. And the Rams still stink and need the draft picks because they already have a franchise QB in Bradford. We know that Cleveland made a strong play for the pick and that several other teams were reported to make offers.

So myth #1, that going 3-13 would have gained us Griffin, is totally busted. That pick was getting traded and it was going to someone who wanted Griffin so he never would have made it pick #3. Period.

Myth #2 – Trading up from #3 to #2 would have cost us less than trading up from #6.

I have read several times, in several different places, that winning those two games cost us more picks in this move to trade up. Not sure how people figure that though. Cleveland was 2 places ahead of us and in the end made an offer of greater value then we did and only lost out because the Rams had already agreed to our deal. There is absolutely no indication that the Rams were even considering a discount based on how high a given suitor’s first round pick was or was not.

So while myth #2 may not be totally busted, there is no evidence to support it being true either. We were likely going to deliver a king’s ransom for this pick regardless.

Myth #3 – We were in a bidding war and that drove the price up.

I have heard on a couple of different shows on ESPN and the NFL Network that this was less an auction and more an outright sale along the lines of the no haggle price at Carmax. Supposedly the Rams came out early last week and set the price. The Skins were just the first team willing to meet that price and once we agreed to what the Rams wanted, it was a done deal. Sure, Cleveland tried to pay more later but that is like a second buyer trying to pay more than list at Carmax for a vehicle already sold to a first buyer. Granted, without the paperwork signed yet, all that prevented the Rams from going with the better offer was their honor.

So there goes myth #3 as well and with it the last chance to be really upset with those two late season wins.

The bottom line here is that the Skins were going to pay through the nose for Griffin no matter what. Personally, if I am going to watch my team give up 2 #1s and a #2 to swap picks with someone, I think it hurts a lot less doing so from #6 rather than from #3.
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