Why you should be excited about second-round wide receiver James Washington:
-Offensive coordinator Randy Fichtner’s assessment of Washington was as succinct as it was complimentary: “Tough guy, runs fast, scores touchdowns.”
-Washington led FBS schools in catches (74), receiving yards (1,549) and receiving TDs (13) on the way to winning the Biletnikoff Award, given annually to the nation’s top wide receiver, in 2017.
-Washington had more receiving yards the last three seasons than any other college player (4,016) and left Oklahoma State as the most prolific wide receiver in school history (226 catches for 4,472 yards, a 19.8-yard average per catch and 39 touchdowns). Oklahoma State has produced three wide receivers who became No. 1 picks since 2004 (Rashaun Woods, Dez Bryant and Justin Blackmon).
-Washington is one of two wide receivers in Big XII history to surpass 1,000 yards receiving in three different seasons (Ryan Broyles).
-Washington didn’t miss a game in four seasons and was a two-time team captain.
-At 5-foot-11 and 213 pounds, Washington is built more like a running back, and he brings a running back’s toughness to the wide receiver position. “He competes for that 50-50 ball,” NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock observed.
-Washington doesn’t possess blazing speed (he ran a 4.54 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine) but he’s fast enough on the field. “I think he plays bigger and faster than he times,” Mayock said. Added Fichtner: “He runs 4.54 every play,” a nod to Washington’s conditioning and competitiveness.
-Washington decided to stay in school following his junior season because he wanted to become the first person in his family to earn a college degree.