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Jay Gruden Says To 'Keep An Eye' On Robert Davis

Posted May 2, 2017

The Redskins continued the push to get big receivers on the roster, drafting the 6-foot-3 Robert Davis in the 2017 NFL Draft. He’s Georgia State’s all-time leading receiver.

The Redskins continued the push to get big receivers on the roster, drafting the 6-foot-3 Robert Davis in the 2017 NFL Draft. He’s Georgia State’s all-time leading receiver. 

Among the Washington Redskins’ seven picks selected on the third day of the 2017 NFL Draft, Georgia State wide receiver is, perhaps, the most intriguing prospect for the coaching staff to work with this summer.

“[Wide receivers coach] Ike Hilliard had a pretty good grade on him and really liked him,” Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said. “He has a skill set that is very interesting. He’s big, he’s strong and he is fast and he can catch. He was productive; I don’t know what else you want in a wide receiver so he is going to be an interesting guy to watch. He can play outside, run through arm tackles so keep an eye on him.”

Unlike a majority of the Redskins’ 10 draft picks for the 2017 draft class, Davis did not come from a big school, nor was he highly recruited coming out of Northside (Ga.) High School. In fact, during his high school career Davis said he caught just eight passes in a run-heavy offense.

Despite the lack of targets and production, Davis was still able to enroll at Georgia State where he would eventually become the Panthers’ all-time leading receiver. While Georgia State would join the Sun Belt Conference starting with Davis’ freshman season in 2013, the 6-foot-3, 219 pounder experienced quite a bit of success when the Panthers went up against elite college programs.

In games against West Virginia, Alabama, Washington, Clemson, Oregon and Wisconsin, Davis recorded 23 receptions for 335 yards and three touchdowns, going against the likes of Marcus Peters, Marlon Humphrey and other first-round talents.

Davis hopes that he can take some of the positives from those performances and parlay them over to the NFL, where defenses won’t be locking in on him quite the same way they were when he was Georgia State’s No. 1 receiver.

On the outside, of course, Washington already has Terrelle Pryor Sr. and Josh Doctson, while slot receiver Jamison Crowder and tight end Jordan Reed demand attention in the middle of the field.

“I'm an athletic receiver that can help stretch the field,” Davis said. “I really feel I can come into that organization with the great receiver coach they have there. I'm just ready to go to work and see what I can do to help the team."

Davis comes into the fold for a wide receiving corps that has changed quite significantly since last season, most notably the group’s overall size.

Gone are the six-foot Pierre Garçon and the 5-foot-10 DeSean Jackson. In their place, Washington signed Pryor (6-foot-4) and Brian Quick (6-foot-3) and brought in Davis.

“I think when you’re looking for outside receivers, you’re looking for a guy that can be a little bit bigger,” Gruden said. “We feel like we have the best inside receiver – one of the best ones in the game – in Jamison so we weren’t really looking to add another one there. But we have some guys that can play a little bit of everywhere. You’d like to have size, but we just felt like at the time Robert was the best player available at receiver.

He just so happened to be 6-3 and runs a 4.4. Good for us. Really, size, we weren’t looking for a specific position there. We were looking for a guy that could run and maybe help out on special teams in his first year and continue to develop and break in the lineup that way first.”

Davis will have to fight for playing on offense with all of the large weapons currently ahead of him on the roster. But even if his appearances on offense are limited to start, he’ll find ways to make it onto the field.

“All I can say is I’m a football player,” Davis said. “I don’t even consider myself as just a wide receiver. I consider myself a football player. I feel like I can go out there and make plays on special teams. I’m willing to block. I went to a triple option high school, where that was the only thing we did. I only caught [11] passes my high school career. I mean, blocking was what I did, and I am a skilled blocker. I’m a physical guy and I’m a guy who’s willing to go out there and compete.”

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