Skip to main content

NFL Draft: Jahan Dotson 'Surprised', Ready to Work for Commanders

The newest Washington playmaker spoke with media after being selected in the first round of the NFL Draft

A child's dream that not everyone gets to live out is exactly what Jahan Dotson experienced Thursday night when he was taken with the 16th overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft by the Washington Commanders. 

Extra style points for not slipping up and calling the team by the wrong name even once. 

Jahan Dotson 1
Jahan Dotson 2
Jahan Dotson 3

Many were surprised to hear Dotson's name announced as the Commanders' pick following a trade out of the 11th pick with the New Orleans Saints. 

Including Dotson. 

"I had no idea where I was going to go (in the NFL Draft)," Dotson said when asked if he was surprised about being taken 16th overall. "We were kind of thinking later first (or) early second...I'm just happy that I got picked by the Washington Commanders and (I'm) ready to get to work."

As usual, prospects get the all-important phone call from a coach and/or general manager telling them that they were about to become professional football players. 

Staying in line with the expectations of a late Day 1 or early Day 2 selection, Dotson wasn't exactly waiting by the phone for the big call. 

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles


Commander Sam? Washington Rookie QB Impresses In Debut vs. Panthers

Fifth-round pick Sam Howell proved his worth during the Commanders loss to the Panthers.

Antonio Gibson

Commanders RB Antonio Gibson Shares Thoughts on 'Very Frustrating' Fumble

Gibson struggled in his 2022 debut Saturday.


Commanders QB Carson Wentz in Preseason Loss: Predictable or Promising?

Washington Commanders new quarterback Carson Wentz showed consistency in his first start.

"I couldn't believe it at first," Dotson said of getting the call from head coach Ron Rivera. "I was basically watching the Suns-Pelicans game on my phone (when) coach Rivera called me...I just took a step away from everyone and talked to coach Rivera and said...they were going to pick me."

The 5-11 Dotson was projected by's Lance Zierlein as a second-round pick, compared to veteran receiver Emmanuel Sanders. 

"Finesse wideout with good speed and great athleticism who is fully operational on all three levels of the field," Zeirlein wrote. "Dotson's passing scheme was well-designed and allowed for clear access to space for most of the season. His route-running is smooth but features speed changes and his in-air athleticism and ball skills look effortless."

Martin Mayhew
Ron Rivera
Washington Commanders

With the wide receiver position addressed on Day 1, Dotson is the first offensive player drafted by the Washington Commanders in the first round since quarterback Dwayne Haskins was selected out of Ohio State in the 2019 NFL Draft. 

He's the first offensive player selected in the first round since Rivera arrived. 

Oh, and the Phoenix Suns won, eliminating the New Orleans Pelicans from the NBA Playoffs.