Redskins' exodus of draft picks continues with Su'a Cravens' departure

The Washington Redskins lost yet another one of their former draft picks Wednesday, adding to a growing total this offseason. In most cases, letting their own guys go made sense -- they'll save money and be replaced by other homegrown talent.

But the result is that they now have only one player left from their eight-member class of 2014, and just six out of 17 players combined from the 2015-16 draft classes (run by former general manager Scot McCloughan). All 10 members of last year's class remain. They have four players remaining from the 2010-13 classes.

The silver lining for Washington: Other teams value the Redskins' former picks; too often the Redskins' castaway draft picks weren't wanted. But having so few picks left from three recent classes is tough, even if most of the losses can be justified.

Here's what they've lost from their last four draft classes:

Safety Su'a Cravens (second round, 2016): They traded him Wednesday to the Denver Broncos. It was a necessary move for both parties. Cravens wanted a fresh start; the Redskins didn't feel they could trust him to not walk away again.

How they're replacing: With second-year Montae Nicholson, who played well in the six games he was healthy last season. The Redskins also could add another safety in the draft -- Derwin James or Minkah Fitzpatrick might be too hard for them to pass on at 13. If Nicholson stays healthy or they add one of these other two players, the Redskins will be in good shape.

Linebacker Trent Murphy (second round, 2014): He signed a three-year deal with the Buffalo Bills worth $7.5 million per year with $10.375 million in guaranteed money. The Redskins weren't going to pay that amount of cash for a No. 3 outside linebacker; he'll start in Buffalo. Murphy made steady progress his first three years, culminating in nine sacks two years ago. But he's coming off a torn ACL and the fear of another PED suspension will hang over him.

How they're replacing: With their 2017 second-round pick Ryan Anderson and newly signed Pernell McPhee. Anderson showed little as a pass-rusher his first season and needs to make a big jump. McPhee was signed to a one-year deal and will count only $1.7 million on the cap. He offers similar qualities to Murphy in terms of size and an ability to play inside in some sub-packages.

Corner Bashaud Breeland (fourth round, 2014): He remains unsigned after failing a physical in Carolina, but he won't be returning to Washington. Breeland's original deal with the Carolina Panthers was for three years but in essence was for one year and $9.4 million. The Redskins already have one high-priced corner in Josh Norman, who will count $17 million against their cap in 2018.

How they're replacing: With more homegrown talent: Quinton Dunbar (undrafted free agent in 2015) and Fabian Moreau (third-round pick 2017). Moreau played sparingly as a rookie, largely because of the players in front of him. But if he comes through, then they've replaced Breeland with a cheaper and possibly more talented option. Just in case, they signed Orlando Scandrick. He can play outside if the other two aren't ready. And if they're not? There could be issues.

Corner Kendall Fuller (third round, 2016): This was the toughest loss. Fuller was included in the trade for quarterback Alex Smith. Fuller was the sort of player you want: a smart student of the game who made plays. He was their corner who made the most impact. He was a slot corner in Washington, though the Kansas City Chiefs will try him outside.

How they're replacing: With Scandrick. He made his name in Dallas playing in the slot. Scandrick, 31, also will be a good mentor to the other young corners and is considered a smart player. The question surrounds his durability after missing all of 2015 with a knee injury and then nine games combined the past two years.

Center Spencer Long (third round, 2014): He signed with the New York Jets, receiving a four-year deal worth $6.85 million annually with $9 million guaranteed. A year ago the Redskins called Long their center of the future. That ended fast. They did make him an offer before last season.

How they're replacing: With last year's sixth-round pick, Chase Roullier. Because of Long's leg injuries, Roullier ended up starting seven games. It's not set in stone that he'll start, but his solid performance as a rookie convinced the Redskins they did not have to pay a lot to keep Long.

Receiver Ryan Grant (fifth round, 2014): He signed a deal with the Baltimore Ravens that averaged $7 million per year -- until he failed a physical. He later signed a one-year deal worth up to $5 million with the Indianapolis Colts, all of it guaranteed. The coaches loved Grant, but he would have been a fourth receiver in Washington. He's a terrific worker and excellent route runner, but the Redskins wanted more speed at his position.

How they're replacing: They signed Paul Richardson to a five-year deal worth up to $40 million. He's more explosive than Grant. The Redskins also re-signed veteran Brian Quick, though he's not a lock to make the roster considering he received only $60,000 in guaranteed money on his one-year contract. They also were encouraged by the progress of last year's sixth-round pick, Robert Davis. He's not ready for a huge role, but he does offer size (6-foot-3, 217 pounds) and speed (4.44 seconds in the 40-yard dash).