Could McNabb trade force Jimmy Clausen to fall in NFL Draft?

Photo by Tony Ding / AP

The Donovan McNabb to Washington Redskins trade could have a domino effect on the NFL Draft. Washington was expected to be one of the teams who would make a play for Notre Dame’s Jimmy Clausen at the top part of April’s draft. Now that they have McNabb, the Redskins are expected to take one of the top offensive tackles when they pick at number four overall.

Other teams in the top ten that could look at quarterback would be the Seattle Seahawks, Cleveland Browns, Oakland Raiders, Buffalo Bills, and Jacksonville Jaguars who hold picks 6 through 10 respectively.

Seattle just gave up a third-rounder and swapped second-round picks with the Chargers for quarterback Charlie Whitehurst, while Cleveland recently signed former Panthers starter Jake Delhomme. Browns president Mike Holmgren also said he “wishes he liked Clausen more.” Oakland seems to have a strange infatuation with JaMarcus Russell, but Bruce Gradkowski seems to be the leading candidate for the Raiders starting job.

That would leave the Buffalo Bills and Jacksonville Jaguars as the two teams looking to acquire Clausen’s services.

If Clausen is available at pick nine, I would not be shocked if Buffalo jumped on the opportunity to select the Notre Dame product. Of course, there are a lot of questions surrounding Clausen, so it isn’t too far out of the question for him to fall out of the top ten — especially with guys like Colt McCoy and Tim Tebow likely being available at the top of round two.

There is always the off chance that a team outside of the top ten could vault up to select Clausen, but there hasn’t been any strong indications that a team has fallen in love with him has a person or player.

One thing is for sure, the McNabb trade made Jimmy Clausen’s draft day a lot more intriguing. He could hear his name being called by the Bills or Jaguars, or he could have an “Aaron Rodgers-esque” fall to the end of round one. This will be one storyline to follow.

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