Commanders draft Ja'Quan Sheppard
- Cornerback | Maryland Terrapins
- No. 219 overall
The Washington Commanders have conceded so many big plays this season. It's been had to keep up at times. Another big disappointment considering Ron Rivera utilized his first two picks in the 2023 NFL Draft to fortify the secondary.
The jury is still out on Emmanuel Forbes after a stuttering rookie campaign. Quan Martin's shown promise in recent weeks as a nickel option and safety when required. Benjamin St-Juste's status is uncertain. Veteran cornerback Kendall Fuller is out of contract and could generate significant interest as a free agent.
This means the Commanders need to add one or two capable performers. Especially if a contract extension cannot be worked out with starting safety Kamren Curl.
Ja'Quan Sheppard has the capabilities to be a versatile rotational piece with a smooth transition. Asking him to start right away is unrealistic, but the athleticism alone suggests he could be an asset on special teams while the prospect refines his undoubted talent.
Just where the Maryland prospect is best suited at the next level is a big talking point. His size is more in keeping with those on the backend. But the length and ball-tracking abilities mean he could line up against tight ends and bigger wide receivers when called upon.
It's always a crapshoot at this stage of the draft. Sheppard has more value than most given his experience and coping well with his transfer to the Terrapins.