When you talk about the Big Ten and wide receivers, Penn State WR Jahan Dotson almost gets forgotten. However, when you look at any 2022 NFL Mock Draft, he’s pushing the first round. With the NFL Draft less than two months away, there’s still time for him to solidify himself as a first-round pick. For now, let’s look at where he’s projected pre-draft.
NFL Mock Draft 2022: Jahan Dotson’s draft projections
No matter where you look, Dotson is either a late-first-round or early-second-round pick. Analysts love Dotson’s sticky hands. His ability to snatch any pass out of the air is elite, and there aren’t many that can catch as well as Dotson. He might not have the frame of other first-round prospects, which is why he’s projected later on Day 1.
Among PFN’s Draft Analysts, Dotson ranges from 26th to 36th on PFN’s Top 300 Consensus Big Board. That’s a range of WR4 to WR7. It also shows the depth of first-round talent in this class at the position. Dotson’s production matches everyone else in the class, so he just needs to find a way to elevate his stock if he wants to move up on any big board.
Did Dotson’s draft stock change after the NFL Combine?
Dotson’s a high-floor prospect, meaning that he was consistent on tape and verified those beliefs with his testing. The tough part is that the guys around him also tested well. So, to move up his draft stock, he’d have to put up legendary numbers. That’s not necessarily bad, though.
Teams love seeing a guy with a high floor. Dotson performed really well at the NFL Combine, it’s just that other guys did, too. Thus, his stock hasn’t changed much, but Dotson’s verified that he’s worthy of a first-round pick if a team needs a receiver. Sometimes no change is a good thing. For Dotson, it means he proved that he’s as good as advertised. The tests match the tape, and the potential is exciting.
2022 NFL Mock Draft: PFN’s top consensus landing spots
To move up on PFN’s Draft Board, Dotson must improve his numbers from the Combine. Again, he put up solid numbers, so they’re not a liability. He just needs to do something special for a first-round investment. Currently, he’s a second-rounder in the eyes of PFN.
In his latest 7-Round 2022 NFL Mock Draft, PFN Draft Analyst Ian Cummings sent Dotson to the Las Vegas Raiders with the 53rd pick. This was before they traded for Davante Adams, but pairing Dotson with Adams would be a lethal combination. Cummings loves his potential, stating that Dotson has “hands to make gravity-defying plays.”
PFN’s Oliver Hodgkinson and James Fragoza sent Dotson to the New Orleans Saints with the 49th pick. With news of the Saints signing Jameis Winston to take over the offense, receivers are needed. They can’t assume Michael Thomas will come back and be healthy after two years of injuries, so adding Dotson could give them a long-term option.
Where does Dotson land on other draft boards?
Just like PFN, other analysts vary on where they have Dotson on their big boards and where he will land in the draft. NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah sees Dotson as the 25th-best prospect on his big board but had him falling out of the first round in his latest mock.
The Athletic’s Dane Brugler has Dotson as the 30th-best prospect on his big board. Dotson fell out of the first round in his mock, landing with the New York Jets with the 35th overall pick. His description of Dotson gives some insight as to why he’s on the fringe.
“Although he is undersized, he has above-average hands and natural body control with maybe the largest catch radius of any sub-5-foot-11 receiver I have ever scouted,” said Brugler.
Both Mel Kiper and Todd McShay agree with that. Kiper believes that Dotson could be one of the biggest steals in the second half of the first round. McShay agrees, sending Dotson to the Green Bay Packers with the 28th overall pick. That was before the Adams trade, so the pick seems even more likely now.
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