NFL Draft: Washington won't move up for QB, according to Peter King

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NBC Sports' Peter King doesn't expect Washington to move up for a QB originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

There are plenty of questions swirling about what Washington wants to do in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft. As is the case most years, the majority of those rumors center on the question of whether or not the team is pursuing a new signal-caller.

It's clear that at 38 years old, NFL journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick is a stopgap option in the nation's capital rather than the future of the position. With the 19th pick in this year's draft, Washington isn't in an ideal spot to grab a quarterback - it's expected that as many as five quarterbacks will be off the board well before Washington is on the clock.

So if they want to grab a top-level passer, it will require Washington to give up some assets to move up in the draft order. And at least one prominent NFL analyst doesn't expect that to happen.

"A record number of teams want to go down," NBC Sports' Peter King wrote this week, citing at least one GM who thinks picks 35 to 75 is the strength of the class. "I’m projecting a couple of small trades in my mock. I just couldn’t find evidence that QB-needy teams like New England, Washington and Chicago would move up from mid-round and kill their ’22 (and maybe ’23) drafts to move up for a passer."

New England currently holds the 15th pick and Chicago holds the 20th, so Washington is right in the middle of the range of teams looking to upgrade at the position without having the necessary draft capital.

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In going through his mock draft, King mentions multiple teams that he believes would love to trade down with Washington for the right price. Again, he doesn't expect that price to be met, however, by any of Washington or the Patriots or Bears.

RELATED: 5 bold predictions for the 2021 draft

"What I think Atlanta would love, even at the expense of losing out on all of those possibilities, is a trade-down. It’s certainly possible, but I’m leaning against the reality of it," King said of the Falcons at pick number four where a top quarterback is sure to be available. "The cost for New England, Washington or Chicago seems monstrous. Any of those could happen, but I think it’s more likely Fontenot sits and picks a great player."

Another team with a top 10 pick - the Panthers at number eight - could also be an option if a quarterback-needy team is feeling aggressive.

"Count the Panthers as another team that would love to take a passel of picks from New England or Washington to move down," King wrote.

Ultimately, King has Washington sticking at pick number 19 and drafting their left tackle of the future: Christian Darrisaw.

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"At 6-5 and 322, Darrisaw is a feisty and battle-tested player who could play in year one on a line that got overrun for 50 sacks in 2020," King said. "The left-tackle position allowed 38 sacks/pressures for WFT last year, and with a stationary quarterback for at least one more year in Washington in Ryan Fitzpatrick, the immediate need is there to do better."

Washington has options and can go in a number of directions in the middle of the first round. If they don't package their picks to move up for a quarterback, it would make a lot of sense to invest in protecting the quarterbacks they do have on the roster already.