- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 8, 2016

ASHBURN — Josh Doctson hopes that he’ll be able to look back on the last three weeks as just a small speed bump to the start of a productive rookie season with the Washington Redskins.

The 6-foot-2, 206-pound wide receiver and first-round draft pick has missed the majority of organized team activities because of an injured left Achilles’ tendon and is eager to be back on the field as soon as possible.

Doctson understands how cautious he needs to be, though, since rushing back from an injury he initially sustained during rookie minicamp is what landed him in such a predicament. After aggravating the injury during the first week of OTAs, Doctson has participated in walkthroughs, but not in any positional or faster-paced team drills.

“I just kind of got nicked up here in minicamp. [It] was nothing too bad and just lingered for a while,” Doctson said. “I tried to play on it, which I should’ve got off of it, but we’re taking care of it right now.”

Coach Jay Gruden said last week that it’s helpful for Doctson to be participating in these workouts, but that missing OTAs will not derail his development. During practices, Doctson has worked off to the side and caught passes, which is the only football activity he is allowed to do while he rehabilitates the injury.

Off the field, the former TCU standout is paying close attention in meetings and has been watching extra film as he tries to catch up to speed with the Redskins‘ offense. He’s been attentive when watching his teammates, such as wide receivers Pierre Garcon, DeSean Jackson, Ryan Grant and Jamison Crowder.

“They’re all taking care of me,” Doctson said. “Ike [Hilliard, the wide receivers coach], Jay, everybody telling me this game is 85 percent mental. I’m just trying to get back, making sure I’m getting all the mental reps and the calls in the huddle and just seeing myself do it in my head.

“In the film room, I watch Garcon, Jackson all the time. Grant, Crowder. [They run] really good routes, teaching me just by watching it, how to get out of my breaks and what they actually need. Seeing it is just better than hearing it.”

During the short window in which Redskins coaches have seen Doctson, they’ve been pleased with what they’ve seen. When the team drafted Doctson, who caught 78 passes for 1,326 yards and 14 touchdowns in his final year at TCU, they did so hoping the athletic wide receiver would be a strong presence in the red zone.

“The biggest thing he can do right now is make sure he stays up with what we’re doing mentally from an installation standpoint so that when he does come out here, he’s been able to hit it full speed,” Redskins offensive coordinator Sean McVay said. “He’s done a great job in the meeting room. You can tell he’s a real conscientious guy. He was able to practice a couple days where you’re able to see why he was such a special player at TCU, and we’re looking forward to getting him back on the grass.”



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