The 2019 NFL season is entering week 11. Ten weeks in, the race for the number one pick in the 2020 NFL Draft heats up. Teams out of the playoff race have decision to make. Is it time to play hard and gain momentum heading into next season? Or is it time to tank and get the number 1 pick? The number one pick is the most coveted in the NFL Draft. There are two teams entering week 11 that stand at the forefront of winning the first overall pick.
Team number one is the Washington Redskins. The Redskins are sitting at 1-8. Their only win came in week six against the Miami Dolphins. The Redskins prevailed 17-16 with rookie wide receiver Terry McLaurin catching two touchdown passes. Washington already has their quarterback for the future in Dwayne Haskins. Haskins has not thrown a touchdown in 2019 but has registered 284 yards passing. The Redskins remaining schedule includes home games against the Jets, Lions, Eagles, and Giants. Washington has road games against the Panthers, Packers, and Cowboys. The Redskins could hypothetically win two or three games left on their schedule.
The players to pursue in the draft could be Ohio State defensive end Chase Young, or offensive lineman Andrew Thomas or Tristian Wirfs. Washington could still go after Alabama receiver Jerry Jeudy, but the probability of taking Tua Tagovailoa is small. The outcome of the season will become clear within the next few weeks. The Redskins could play hard and finish 4-12 or not and wind up with two wins. Washington has already fired Jay Gruden, is it time to go full rebuild?
The second team is the Cincinnati Bengals. The Bengals are the only winless team in the NFL to this point of the season. They sit at 0-9 and are coming off a 49-13 loss to the Baltimore Ravens. This is not the season first year head coach Zac Taylor had in mind when he was hired in the offseason. The Bengals made their first move towards the offseason with the benching of quarterback Andy Dalton. Rookie quarterback Ryan Finley started last week and threw a touchdown and interception in the loss. Cincinnati has home games against the Steelers, Jets, Patriots, and Browns. Additionally, they travel to Oakland, Cleveland, and Miami. At most, the Bengals might be able to squeak out one or two wins.
Quarterback appears to be the position that is most desired in Cincinnati. In addition to Tagovailoa, the Bengals have the option to take Justin Herbert, Jake Fromm, Jacob Eason, or Joe Burrow. Those are the top five rated quarterbacks coming into the 2020 NFL Draft. The end of the season is already taking form. The Bengals have a favorable schedule to lose out and secure the number one pick. Cincinnati would become the third team all time to finish a season 0-16. Why no one wants to go winless, the adage is “it is a marathon not a sprint.” The Bengals want to reap the rewards in the years to come. The last time Cincinnati advanced in the playoffs was 1990, so the Bengals hope the 2020 Draft is the start of many consecutive seasons of advancing in the postseason.
2019 Potential Outcome
I cannot see these two teams wanting to lose games. They will play hard these last six weeks of the season; whether or not they win is a different story. Both teams will give it their all and if they are outmatched, that is just the way the cookie crumbles. It will be interesting to see what the record read in week 16 and 17. By that time, the want to win might change. Regardless of who clinches the number one pick, these two teams will be interesting to watch as we conclude the 2019 season. Who gets picked number one all depends on what the team wants and needs at that time. All eyes will be on Nevada in the month of April. Until then, we focus our eyes on Washington D.C. and Cincinnati, Ohio, to see how their seasons play out as the two worst teams in the NFL.