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Fantasy Outlook: Josh Doctson

Fantasy Outlook: Josh Doctson
Is Washington a good destination Josh Doctson's dynasty value?

Is Washington a good destination for Josh Doctson’s dynasty value?

Josh Doctson was drafted 22nd overall by Washington and as a first-round WR, he will have a lot of pressure to produce in D.C. That said, when you take a look at his situation he has been drafted into, it’s a pretty good one. Doctson is considered one of the best WRs in this relatively weak 2016 class.

He surprised some people by running a 4.5 40-yard dash at the combine to go along with some of the best vertical leap and broad jump scores in this WR class.  This shows up on the field where he is great at high-pointing a ball and coming down with contested catches and needs to work on getting off of the line in press coverage.

What the combine uncovered is that Doctson is a better athlete than given credit for and one of the best athletes at the WR position in this class. At first glance, you may think Washington is not the best place for him to go but several circumstances make this a great landing spot for Doctson both regarding redraft and dynasty fantasy production.

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First, you have an offensive minded coach, Jay Gruden, going into his third year and still trying to find all of the right pieces to his offensive puzzle. He’s worked through getting the right QB (given his choices) in place, and now he wants to give him weapons. Second, there is no doubt that Gruden looks at his current WR corps of DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon and Jamison Crowder as good but not great.

Jackson is 29 years old this year on a contract that essentially ends at the end of this season with 2017 being a voidable year. Jackson has done well when on the field. But combined with injuries and a skill set that is geared more towards being a speedy deep threat than anything else, one has to believe Washington can replace him cheaply next year with a more versatile replacement. Garcon is also at the end of his contract and is 29 years old this year. With Jamison Crowder tagged as the slot receiver, you’re looking at a starting WR corps that is on the back-end of their careers and looking at free agency next season, not a good situation for Washington but a great situation for Josh Doctson to walk into.

Finally, you have to consider WR production on the team last year. While Garcon was the most productive WR on the roster, he only had 777 receiving yards last year and was second to TE Jordan Reed with catches at 72. There is no doubt Gruden is looking for more production from his WRs this coming season and Doctson will be a big part of that.

From a fantasy perspective, Doctson is a sure bet to be a WR1 in this offense. The only question is how long will it take and how productive can he be given the talent around him and answering those questions will help understand his redraft and dynasty value. Garcon and Jackson are two wily veterans that have been very productive in this league.

It’s hard to see where either of them is phased out in 2016 as Gruden will need all of the help he can get. That said, while it’s virtually assured that Doctson won’t begin the year as a starter, he may well finish it as one, which does give him some sleeper appeal in redraft leagues. I would put his range of production in 2016 between 35 and 50 catches and 500-700 yards.

Depending on how many TDs he catches that’s WR 4/5 range, though through injury or growth he could end up the season as a WR 2/3. In dynasty leagues, there are very few WRs that I would strongly recommend in this class, but Doctson is one of them. His fate is truly tied to Kirk Cousins.

However, there is no reason to believe the growth we saw from Cousins last year won’t continue this year. so if you’re an optimistic person, he should be one of the top dynasty prospects in this draft and will no doubt be worth a top five rookie draft pick, maybe even top three.

Ken Clein is a correspondent at FantasyPros. You can check out his website dynastyfootballfan.com or follow him @DynastyFootball.

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