The Washington Redskins came into draft night looking as if they were seeking defensive help. To many people’s surprise, the team made a ‘big-picture’ move and left with one of the top offensive weapons in the entire draft.
After trading the 21st pick to the Houston Texans (received a 2017 6th rounder in the process), the Redskins selected WR Josh Doctson from TCU with the 22nd pick in the first round.
Josh Doctson with the 22nd Pick
The process the Redskins used is classic Scot McCloughan in action, choose the best player available, and trade back if you can, “Well, when you are sitting at 21, there’s a lot of scenarios you play out. Scot and the scouts did an excellent job,” Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said. “There were a lot of guys taken before… It’s about taking the best player on the board, and Josh was clearly the best player on the board at that time for us. We traded back a spot with Houston, obviously. Still, Josh was there, and he was clearly the best player. Scot has been preaching that, and we went with the board.”
— Washington Redskins (@Redskins) April 29, 2016
Doctson (6-2, 202 lbs) was surprised the Redskins were interested, “I met with them one time, and it was an informal interview at the combine,” Doctson said. “I really didn’t think they were interested in me at all. That’s what I was saying – it was so sudden and really abrupt being picked by the Redskins, but, man, hey, I’m happy and ready to get to work.”
In the end, the move was smart on multiple fronts, but it will stand out as a ‘big-picture’ insurance type of selection. Next season the Redskins have real issues heading their way as both DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon have expiring contracts. Drafting a player with the ability of Doctson means the team can now move on from Garcon or Jackson, or both after next season when their contracts run out. Both will be 31 before the 2017 season begins.
Doctson is a physical specimen with a special skill set not too many others possess, including a forty-one-inch vertical leaping ability. In 35 games at TCU, he set school records in receiving yards (2,785) and receiving touchdowns (29) and ranks second in TCU history with 180 career receptions.
Gruden is happy about the pick, “Josh is obviously a very productive receiver out of TCU. Made a lot of big plays in his career. He’s got height. He’s got the mad leaping skills, which are very appealing, especially in a red zone, obviously. He’s another guy that is going to bring great athleticism to this offense. We’re excited to have him.”
In the aftermath of moving back one spot from the team the Redskins traded with, the Texans picked up one of the top receiving prospects in Will Fuller, who is viewed as a Desean Jackson type of player. Gruden acknowledged the team was aware others picking behind them were searching receivers out as well, “It was a chance we were taking. We knew there was a couple really good receivers on the board. We knew teams behind us wanted receivers. We had a couple other guys in mind that we could’ve taken with that pick also. It worked out in our favor. We made the trade and obviously landed the guy we wanted.”
Seeing as how Doctson is a Texan, one of the most important questions that he can possibly be asked is, ‘Are you a Cowboys fan?’ Thankfully he had the right answer on this one, “I really didn’t grow up a fan of any NFL teams. I was a basketball kid growing up, so I didn’t really have much involvement with football or a liking of a certain team. I wasn’t a Cowboys fan, to answer that question.”