ASHBURN, Va. -- The Redskins did not keep the 21st pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, but were still able to get their guy in Josh Doctson. The talented receiver was able to go from a walk-on at Texas Christian to school record-setter to NFL first round pick. Here's a quick look at how.
Coming out of high school in Mansfield, Texas, Doctson was lightly recruited. Breaking his collarbone perhaps played a factor, though he showed signs of his future playmaking. Most scouts came to his games to see one of his teammates, Tevin Mitchell. The Redskins drafted Mitchell in the sixth-round last season, but released him in training camp
Doctson eventually landed with the University of Wyoming, but didn't finish his freshman year before leaving. Homesickness played a factor, according to a profile in Sports Illustrated, with his grandfather terminally ill and Wyoming nowhere his family. The initial plan involved heading to a junior college, but he soon set his sights on Texas Christian University. That his mother worked for the school helped. With tuition reimbursement for employee's children, Doctson's family needed to pay room and board so he could have a shot at walking on to the team.
He sat out 2012 and was not a major cog in the offense in 2013. Rather than let despair take over, Doctson turned for help. From SI.com:
So he stayed. But Doctson wasn't content to lift weights and hope that would eventually even the playing field. Instead, he figured the best way to improve would be to get inside the heads of the players charged with stopping him. Doctson turned to TCU's defensive backs—in particular Jason Verrett, whom the Chargers picked in the first round of the 2014 NFL draft, and Kevin White, who signed with the Falcons as an undrafted free agent last spring—to pick their brains. Verrett says Doctson wanted to know every element of what makes a receiver elusive in the eyes of a cornerback. Speed, vision, cuts and separation—he resolved to work on all of them. He also overhauled his nutrition, cutting out the soda and fast food that had always been staples of his diet.
The work worked. In his redshirt junior season, Doctson put up 1,018 yards and 11 receiving touchdowns on 65 receptions. He would top that in his last year of play with 79 catches for 1,327 yards and 14 touchdowns.
Doctson finished his TCU career with a school record 2,785 receiving yards and 29 touchdown catches. His 180 receptions rank second in TCU history, one behind Kelly Blackwell.
You could say the young man enjoyed playing in the high scoring and tempo offense of the Big 12 conference.
A consensus 2015 College Football All-American Team, has 31 and 7/8 inch arms, 9 and 7/8 inch hands, and ran a 4.50 s 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine.
Not just focused on the field, Doctson graduated with a degree in film last December. By then NFL teams were surely studying the film on the rising talent. His workouts at EXOS, a San Diego performance training facility, showed what he offered physically. More from SI:
He was immediately popular—and that was before the wide receiver drills, where he performed in the 93rd percentile of all receivers' SPARQ (Speed, Power, Agility, Reaction and Quickness) scores. Over the past 17 draft classes, only 13 wideouts have matched his speed (4.5-second 40-yard dash), vertical jump (41", best among receivers), broad jump (10' 11", second best) and height—and he scored extra points by weighing in at 200 pounds.
Clearly he score extra points with the Redskins scouts.
Now we know a little more about Josh Doctson. We'll have to wait to see what the future holds.
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