Going as far back as the 1960s, the Redskins have a long history of trading away their draft picks.
Just last year, in head coach Mike Shanahan's first season in Washington, the Redskins traded away 2011 third- and fourth-round draft picks to acquire quarterback Donovan McNabb and offensive tackle Jammal Brown.
Moving forward, head coach Mike Shanahan wants to change that trend.
At the NFL Scouting Combine last month, Shanahan told reporters that he was establishing a system that that would allow the club to "have a lot more draft picks."
He did not divulge specifics, but his statement suggests the team could be less inclined to trade picks for players and more aggressive in terms of trading down to acquire more picks.
"It's a process," said Shanahan, in his second season in Washington. "You bring in a certain way to scout. A lot of times, Washington in the past has traded away a lot of draft choices and they didn't have many draft choices. Hopefully with the system that we have, we'll have a lot more draft picks."
The Redskins hold the 10th overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, scheduled for April 28-30.
At No. 10, the team could consider quarterback, wide receiver, defensive line and outside linebacker, among other positions.
Or they could trade down.
By trading either of their first- or second-round picks this year, the Redskins could get back their third- and fourth-rounders.
The second-rounder is expected to be the 42nd overall selection in the draft.
The Patriots, for example, have a whopping eight draft picks in the first four rounds of the 2011 NFL Draft. That gives them great flexibility to trade up for a targeted player as well as trade down for more picks in 2012 and beyond.
Shanahan continues to emphasize that he wants to build the team "the right way," focusing on young, high-character players who want to be a part of the franchise long-term.
"We're not going to do it all overnight," he added.
Shanahan is working in concert with general manager Bruce Allen, director of player personnel Scott Campbell and the scouts on the draft process.
"I like the people we have," he said. "I've had the chance to spend a lot of time with them. We've talked about the direction that we want to go."