4 Commanders rookies who can help themselves most at 2023 minicamp

K.J. Henry
K.J. Henry / Eakin Howard/GettyImages
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K.J. Henry - Commanders DE/OLB

There wasn't much movement up or down the draft board from Ron Rivera and the Washington Commanders in 2023. However, they did feel the urgency to trade forward in the fifth round to guarantee the services of K.J. Henry.

The former Clemson star became a dependable rotational piece with the Tigers under Dabo Sweeney. Henry proved he can do more with less, but whether or not the edge rusher is capable of assuming NFL starting responsibilities is another matter entirely.

On the face of things, there is plenty to like about Henry's college production. He can get after the quarterback when required with a decent burst and also boasts enough functional strength to set the edge against the run for good measure.

Henry - whose father is a lifelong Commanders fan and couldn't wait to get his old Jeremiah Trotter jersey out of the closet after the pick was confirmed - also has the physical frame to potentially make a switch to outside linebacker if the coaching staff sees fit. This is likely to be a topic of discussion throughout the team's rookie minicamp.

There isn't any immediate pressure on Henry thanks to the strength of Washington's defensive front. But that doesn't mean the player won't want to get off on the best foot possible in the days ahead.