In this series, Pete Hailey will preview 11 players whom the Commanders could select with the 11th overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.
Next up: Receiver Garrett Wilson.
Background: 6-foot, 192-pound pass-catcher... Will turn 22 years old just before training camp... Dublin, Ohio native... Played three years at Ohio State... 70 receptions, 1,058 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2021.
Biggest strength: Wilson is superb at both getting the ball in his hands and then ripping off monster gains after the catch happens. In case you were curious, yes, those are important traits for a wideout to have.
Though Wilson isn't exactly a towering threat on the outside, he excels at turning questionable 50-50 passes into more favorable 75-25 affairs. It's almost like he prefers snatching inaccurate attempts to coming down with the easy ones:
"The thing that stands out to me about him at receiver is his body control," longtime Ohio State beat writer Bill Rabinowitz told the Washington Football Talk podcast about Wilson in a recent interview. "He just has a catch radius that’s unbelievable, and he just makes the acrobatic look routine."
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When Wilson gets it in open space, meanwhile, he tends to create more open space thanks to his explosive agility and wide array of make-you-miss moves.
To put it simply, the guy can create some sick highlights and enthralling touchdowns.
Biggest question mark: Wilson's best moments can be put up against any other prospect at the position in this year's class and withstand the scrutiny. When he's on, he's on.
The problem, though, is that he's liable to drop throws he shouldn't and, according to multiple scouting reports, he has lots of room to grow in terms of his route running.
In college — even at a major program like Ohio State and in a well-regarded conference like the Big Ten — Wilson could still thrive despite his somewhat unrefined concentration and technique. Those flaws have doomed plenty of players before him in the NFL, however, so it'll be paramount that he keeps maturing.
Potential fit in Washington: Wilson is familiar with both slot and outside duties, meaning he, Terry McLaurin and Curtis Samuel (his fellow Buckeyes, by the way) could all coexist together with the Commanders. No one would be stepping on anyone else's role or spot in the lineup, essentially.
When it comes to his ability, Wilson would be a very sensible addition for Washington — if he lasts to 11. As it turns out, there's going to be a lot of interest in a soon-to-be 22-year-old who can snare a slant and go the distance in a matter of seconds.
Should Wilson not get drafted until the Commanders are on the clock, Ron Rivera may not have to think long about the decision.
Random and probably ultimately useless fact that's being included in this story anyway: As a junior at Lake Travis High in Texas, Wilson racked up 98 receptions for 1,774 and scored a total of 32 times. Don't you feel for those poor defenders who had to sit in sixth-period chemistry on a Friday knowing that in five short hours they'd be tormented by Wilson? High school is hard enough without that sort of dread!
Previous profiles: WR Treylon Burks | CB Trent McDuffie | S Kyle Hamilton | LB Devin Lloyd