3 realistic expectations for Jahan Dotson’s rookie season
By Jerry Trotta
If you really think about it, the Washington Commanders are getting a cavalcade of reinforcements on offense next year.
Between the trade for Carson Wentz, Curtis Samuel and Logan Thomas returning from injury, and draft picks Jahan Dotson, Brian Robinson Jr. and Cole Turner, the Commanders’ offense should be much improved in 2022.
Anything less would be a huge disappointment. When it comes to the club’s rookies, though, expectations should be tempered.
As we learned with Jamin Davis last season, not every rookie makes a seamless transition from college to the NFL. That got us thinking about Washington’s incoming draftees. What exactly should be expected of them in Year 1?
We’ll rip through each of them at some point, but we’ll fittingly start with Dotson, the team’s first-round draft choice.
3 realistic expectations for Commanders rookie Jahan Dotson
3. 65+ catches, 650 yards, 4+ Touchdowns
If we’re being honest, we have zero idea what to expect from Dotson statistically speaking. There’s just no way to know how much the Commanders will split the balance between passing and running the football.
Assuming the passing percentage increases with Carson Wentz replacing Taylor Heinicke, Dotson should aim for a floor like: 60 catches for 600 yards and four touchdowns. For context, here’s a look at how last year’s first- and early second-round receivers fared in their rookie seasons.
- Ja’Marr Chase (No. 5) – 81 catches, 1455 yards, 13 TDs
- Jaylen Waddle (No. 6) – 104 catches, 1015 yards, 6 TDs
- DeVonta Smith (No. 10) – 64 catches, 916 yards, 5 TDs
- Kadarius Toney (No. 20) – 39 catches, 420 yards, 0 TDs
- Rashod Bateman (No. 27) – 46 catches, 515 yards, 1 TD
- Elijah Moore (No. 34) – 43 catches, 538 yards, 5 TDs
It’s important to remember there was a steep drop-off after Smith in last year’s showcase. This year, there was a similar consensus fall-off after the top three of London, Wilson and Williams, with Dotson and Olave leading the second tier.
It’d be unfair to expect Dotson to post numbers akin to Chase and Waddle, but he could push for a Smith-like stat line if everything goes according to plan. If the former Nittany Lion can go 60-650-4, everything beyond that would be gravy.