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Wake Up Washington | Rivera is impressed with progress from rookie class


Organized Training Activities are voluntary, but there's plenty of value that can be found during the three-week period of the Washington Commanders' offseason workout program. 

Just ask the Commanders' eight-player draft class, which has been adjusting to the rigors of the NFL. Some, like first-round pick Jahan Dotson, are expected to be immediate contributors, while others will be depth pieces in their rookie seasons. 

Either way, Rivera is impressed with their progress. 

"You feel good about our picks," Ron Rivera told team analyst Logan Paulsen. "We really think these guys have an opportunity to come in and be part of what we're doing." 

Dotson, who the Commanders took with the No. 16 overall pick, has been the clear standout. He's made steady progress during each practice, and the last time the media came to the facility, Dotson made several grabs, including a touchdown from Carson Wentz.  

"He's done a nice job," offensive coordinator Scott Turner told reporters after last Wednesday's OTA. "He came in, it looks like it's not too big for him." 

But Dotson is hardly the sole rookie who has impressed people. Players like fifth-round pick Cole Turner, offensive lineman Chris Paul and defensive back Christian Holmes have also delivered solid moments. Holmes, the Commanders' final draft pick, even grabbed an interception during Monday's OTA. 

Those performances, Rivera said, help confirm many of the evaluations they had on their draft picks. 

"It's kudos to our scouting department. I think Martin [Mayhew] and Marty [Hurney] and Eric [Stokes] and Tim Gribble, those guys have done a great job for us. And when these guys go out and find guys later and they look like they can come in and contribute, that's a big deal." 

The draft picks have been able to build chemistry with their new teammates as well. Rivera praised the attendance over the past three weeks with only a handful of players being absent. 

And if the Commanders are to take the next step that Rivera envisions, that's a good sign. 

"You see guys really coming together, really working at it," Rivera said. "And it is a good testament just to how quickly...the rookies have picked some things up, because we got a lot of those guys involved already."

Here's a morning roundup of what the local and national media have to say about the Washington Commanders on Wednesday June 8, 2022. All reports, rumors and conjecture are a reflection of the media conversation and are not endorsed or confirmed by the Washington Football Team.

The reports and deals expressed in this article have not been confirmed by Washington, nor do they reflect any insider information from anyone in the front office.

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