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Dynasty Prospect Scouting Report: Jahan Dotson

By Jared Smola | Updated on Tue, 01 Aug 2023 . 1:37 PM EDT

Jahan Dotson, WR, Penn State

Height: 5’11

Weight: 178

Age: 22.0

Combine Results:

40-yard dash: 4.43 seconds (76th percentile)

Vertical: 36” (36th)

Broad: 10’1” (52nd)

3-cone: 7.28 seconds (9th)

Short shuttle: DNP

College career:

Dotson lettered in football, basketball and track & field at Nazareth Area High School in Pennsylvania. He caught 62 balls for 889 yards and 15 TDs as a senior, earning a 4-star grade from most scouting services. Dotson collected scholarship offers from over 20 schools, including Alabama, Georgia, Ohio State, Clemson and Notre Dame. He ultimately opted to stay in-state with the Nittany Lions.

Dotson managed just 13 catches across 8 appearances as a true freshman. Redshirt freshman WR K.J. Hamler and true freshman TE Pat Freiermuth finished top 2 on that team in catches, receiving yards and TDs

Dotson earned a starting job alongside Hamler as a sophomore. He finished 3rd in all major receiving categories, accounting for 12.4% of Penn State’s receptions, 17.0% of the receiving yards and 20% of the receiving TDs.

Dotson’s per-game numbers spiked in a COVID-shortened, 9-game 2020 campaign. With Hamler off to the NFL, Dotson emerged as Penn State’s #1 WR, averaging 5.8 catches, 98.2 yards and .9 TDs per game. The market shares: 28.1% of the catches, 38.4% of the yards and 47.1% of the TDs. It’s worth noting that Freiermuth missed 5 games that year.

Dotson ranked 26th in Pro Football Focus’ 2020 receiving grades among 146 WRs with 50+ targets. His 2.63 yards per route run was good for 27th.

Dotson played in 12 of 13 games this past season, opting out of the Outback Bowl to start prepping for the NFL draft. He set new career highs with 7.6 catches, 98.5 yards and 1.0 TDs per game. In his 12 games, Dotson hogged 33.0% of the team’s receptions, 35.9% of the receiving yards and 50% of the TDs.

He set a new personal best in PFF receiving grade (87.2), although his yards per route run dipped a tad (2.56). Those marks ranked 14th and 46th, respectively, among 200 WRs with 50+ targets.

After playing almost exclusively on the outside in 2019 and 2020, Dotson moved into the slot for 23.4% of his routes last year. He was more effective from the inside, averaging 3.43 yards per route run vs. 2.30 from the outside.

Film study:

Courtesy of FF Astronauts

Games watched - Maryland (2020), Ohio State (2020), Auburn, Ohio State, Michigan

Dotson plays like a big receiver in a small body.

He has a much wider catch radius than you’d expect from a 5’11, 178-pounder.

Dotson even shows the ability to go up and win contested balls.

He has some of the most reliable hands in this class, with a career 5.2% drop rate, according to Pro Football Focus.

While Dotson isn’t as dynamic a mover as someone like Garrett Wilson, he creates separation with sudden and efficient routes

And he has the quickness and technique to beat press coverage.

Dotson is quick and decisive after the catch but usually goes down on first contact.

Fantasy potential:

Dotson squeezes every ounce he can out of his game. And that’s the concern as we project him to the next level.

It was enough to produce in college, but I’m not sure it’ll fly vs. bigger, better NFL CBs. I got that feeling watching Dotson’s tape. And his measurables don’t alleviate the concern.

Not only is Dotson just 5’11 and 178 pounds, but he also has 18th percentile arm length and a 22nd percentile wingspan. He’s small. And he’s not an elite athlete. The 4.43-second 40 time is nice, but Dotson posted an average broad jump, a below-average vertical and a horrendous 3-cone time.

Even his college production profile is just ok. The junior and senior years were solid, but Dotson was easily out-produced by K.J. Hamler in their first 2 college seasons. (And Hamler, amid injuries, hasn’t done much in the NFL yet.)

I’m frankly surprised that Dotson is garnering 1st-round buzz. He looks like a 2nd- or 3rd-rounder to me – and a guy who likely maxes out as a #2 WR as a pro. His size figures to limit him mostly to the slot. And don't expect him to be a contested-catch winner as a pro. But Dotson's route-running ability should translate to the next level and give him a shot to be at least a lower-end fantasy starter.

Jared Smola Author Image
Jared Smola, Lead Analyst
Jared has been with Draft Sharks since 2007. He’s now Lead Analyst, heading up the preseason and weekly projections that fuel your Draft War Room and My Team tools. He currently ranks 1st among 133 analysts in draft rankings accuracy.
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