The Redskins had high hopes for wide receiver Josh Doctson when they selected him with the 22nd overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, but Achilles tendon injuries caused him to miss all but two regular-season games that year.
Doctson has been worked into the offense slowly this season, as the team has attempted to make sure he’s recovered from his injuries, given his history. He’s hauled in only 11 receptions (on 22 targets), but three of those have resulted in touchdowns. Still, none of his 11 grabs were bigger than the incredible diving catch he made against the Seahawks last Sunday — setting up the game-winning score. The 38-yard reception earned a lot of praise from his teammates, including veteran cornerback Josh Norman, who knows a sweet grab when he sees one.
Doctson seems to be winning Kirk Cousins over as well, as the Redskins quarterback showed a lot of trust in targeting him with the game on the line. Cousins opened up about the chemistry between him and Doctson in speaking to the media on Wednesday.
“Just being on the field making mistakes is better than not practicing,” Cousins said, via Stephen Whyno of the Associated Press. “I think that’s been the biggest help … to have plays where we go out there and we run routes and we talk about the coverage and what I need from him and what I want his route to look like,” Cousins said.
“Every time I throw him the ball, I learn more about how to be more consistent with him, play in and play out and how to get him more and more involved. And he learns how to get the ball in this offense and what he needs to do to keep showing up.”
Cousins, who is known for holding himself to a high standard, also revealed what he told Doctson just minutes after the two hooked up on the big catch late in Sunday’s game. It was almost as exciting as the multilotto lottery results.
“Let’s make sure this isn’t a one-and-done thing,” Cousins told Doctson. “Let’s make sure this is a repeatable thing and something that people expect to have happen not just next week, not just this season, but hopefully for seasons to come.”
With DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon having departed in free agency during the offseason, the Redskins have been searching for a No. 1 receiver that Cousins can trust. It’s clear that Terrelle Pryor hasn’t been that guy, so the door is wide-open for Doctson. If he continues to come up big in key moments, with the chemistry between him and Cousins improving each week, the Redskins might just have a formidable QB-WR duo, something they’ve lacked for awhile now.