Darnold Traded, Fitzpatrick Here - Washington Still Needs 'Our Guy' At QB

With Sam Darnold on a new team, the Washington Football Team will need to look for "our guy" in the draft
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Two things have been answered this offseason for the Washington Football Team. 

One, Ron Rivera will decide what is best for the franchise. Two, they still need a quarterback. 

Washington started four quarterbacks on the way to winning the NFC East in 2020. Ryan Fitzpatrick certainly is an upgrade in experience, but therein lies the problem. 

The 38-year-old, who agreed to a one-year deal worth $10.5 million, is likely the bridge option. 

Many believed Washington would be a great fit for Sam Darnold, who seemed destined to leave the New York Jets. He did, but the fourth-year pro won't be headed to D.C. 

The Carolina Panthers have added Darnold in exchange for a three draft picks over the next two seasons. The hope is that with coordinator Joe Brady, the 23-year-old can advance to Pro Bowl form. 

READ MORE: Darnold Trade Ends Washington QB Rumors - Right?

For Washington, the plan is - or ought to be - simple: leave the draft with the hopeful quarterback of the future. 

No questions asked. 

Washington currently holds the No. 19 selection on April 29. Even before Darnold was announced as moving to the Queen City, Carolina selecting at No. 8 seem like a far stretch to draft a quarterback in the first round. 

San Francisco jumped into the top three and will add a gunslinger. Both Jacksonville and New York will be selecting their future under at picks No. 1 and No. 2. Depending on who's available after No. 3 could lead to trades up to the top five. 

The good news? Should a QB drop, it could lower the asking price for WFT to move up. 

If GM Martin Mayhew would be willing to risk it, a move up for Ohio State's Justin Fields or North Dakota's State's Trey Lance is plausible. The question would be where they would have to climb? We believe Detroit, Carolina and Denver all could be willing to move back for the right place. 

READ MORE: NFL Draft: How NFC East Back-To-Back-To-Back Impacts Washington

Then again, why give up all the draft collateral? 

Washington has pressing needs at linebacker, offensive tackle and free safety entering the offseason. A move up to the top 10 not only would cost the franchise a future first-round pick, but multiple second-round selections as well. 

Can WFT hit all areas of needs with later selections? 

Unless in love with the talent in the 10s, WFT could attack the position on Day 2. We believe that Rivera could look at Davis Mills from Stanford or Kellen Mond from Texas A&M somewhere in the third round. 

Washington holds both the No. 74 and No. 82 selection in Round 3. 

There's always the argument of drafting a position of need versus best player available. As close as WFT is to remaining ahead in the NFC East, they still are several pieces from contending at the highest level. 

Teams can find impact players all across the NFL Draft. Terry McLaurin was selected in the third-round back in 2019. Antonio Gibson was a third-round pick in 2020 while Kam Curl was the team's final selection last April. 

Cole Holcomb, who finished third in tackles, wasn't selected until pick No. 173 in 2019. 

Darnold now will rule in the Queen City. Washington now must look elsewhere for a franchise quarterback. WFT will enter draft night with a lingering need for a long-term option under center. 

Our Chris Russell has written about a search while avoiding "desperation.'' That rings true. But the search is necessary. The WFT should enter and exit this NFL Draft with the hope that the "Our Guy'' answer is on the roster come September.

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