Jahan Dotson Reveals Which QB He Wanted Commanders to Draft

When the Washington Commanders selected Jayden Daniels second overall in the 2024 NFL draft, they didn’t just fire up a fanbase, the franchise also earned the approval of wide receiver Jahan Dotson.

The latter made a strong statement endorsing the pick by revealing Daniels is the quarterback he wanted. Speaking to reporters after OTAs on Tuesday, May 14, Dotson said, “I don’t know if I can say this, but that’s the quarterback that I wanted. I was happy when we drafted him. I’m really looking forward to building a relationship with him, furthering our relationship, as I’ve known him in the past, but you know he’s been good so far. He’s only been here a couple of days now, but, yeah, he has big things coming for him.”

WR Jahan Dotson speaks to the media after today’s OTA https://t.co/HzV8NFjP2L

— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) May 14, 2024

Dotson got what he wanted, even though the Commanders had their choice of other prominent draft quarterbacks, including Drake Maye and J.J. McCarthy. Taking Daniels left Maye to go to the New England Patriots third overall, before the Minnesota Vikings made national champion McCarthy the 10th pick.

This is the time of the year on the NFL’s calendar when positivity reigns supreme, but it’s still encouraging Daniels is making a positive first impression. His rapport with Dotson and fellow wideout Terry McLaurin will be key to transforming the Commanders’ offense.

Daniels’ arm talent is the biggest focus, but Dotson still faces scrutiny after he regressed somewhat in 2023 following a promising rookie campaign.

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Jayden Daniels Already Turning Heads

It hasn’t taken Daniels long to wow onlookers. The Heisman Trophy winner was quickly credited with possessing a special factor after his first practice at Washington’s rookie minicamp.

Praise for Daniels has continued unabated during OTAs. Offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury offered his own plaudits, telling reporters Daniels has been “focused, intentional and got to work, so that’s been fun to be around,” per NBC4 Sports’ JP Finlay.

Kliff Kingsbury on Jayden Daniels – “He’s intentional. Everything he does….He works really hard at it.” On Luke Mcaffrey – “I really like his story…He’s overcome adversity.” pic.twitter.com/UAx1jGOp6t

— JP Finlay (@JPFinlayNBCS) May 14, 2024

The early feedback is already endorsing the Commanders choosing Daniels over Maye or McCarthy. Both were in the frame to become Washington’s new QB1 at several points during the pre-draft process.

Ultimately though, many believed Commanders’ general manager Adam Peters and head coach Dan Quinn had their sights set firmly on Daniels. Ensuring they made the right call will depend on how well Daniels’ playmaking gifts mesh with dynamic supporting acts like Dotson.

Jahan Dotson Needs Third-Year Leap

Daniels’ chances of living up to the hype when things get competitive will be boosted if Dotson makes a necessary leap in his third year. The pass-catcher drafted 16th overall back in 2022 has been erratic so far in the pros.

Dotson snagged 35 receptions for 523 yards and seven touchdowns as a rookie. Although he made 14 more catches last season, Dotson’s yards per grab average dropped from 15 to 11, while he only found the end zone four times.

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Perhaps more telling was how Dotson averaged just 2.3 yards after catch per reception in 2023, 1.6 fewer than the previous season, per Pro Football Reference. He also continued to struggle with drops, letting five passes get away after putting six on the ground in his first year.

There is ample room for Dotson to get better. Particularly thanks to his intelligent manipulation of space between the numbers, something Nate Tice of Yahoo Sports highlighted against the Baltimore Ravens last preseason.

love how Jahan Dotson works himself open and finds space on 4th down pic.twitter.com/oeU9g4XQKU

— Nate Tice (@Nate_Tice) August 23, 2023

Dotson can be a safety valve underneath for Daniels, but the dual-threat signal-caller’s game is more about stretching the field. It’s what he did by averaging 11.7 yards per attempt for LSU last season.

Ideally, Kingsbury will craft ways for Dotson to extend the inside passing lanes, while McLaurin dominates on the perimeter. That combination would give Daniels what he needs to succeed early and quickly prove the Commanders made the right choice.

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