It’s officially draft week in the NFL. Come Thursday, players from all across the College Football landscape will start to find their new homes. Last year that happened in record breaking fashion for the Georgia Bulldogs with 15 players picked. It won’t be quite that many this year, but Kirby Smart’s crew still should be well represented in the selections taking place over the course of three days in Kansas City.
With double-digit Georgia players expected to be picked, DawgsHQ prepares you by taking a look back on their respective collegiate careers with our Georgia Draft Profile series. Next up, a tight end who looks more like a left tackle, the Big 0, Darnell Washington.
Weight: 264 pounds
Arms / Hands: 34 3/8 inches / 11 inches
High School / Hometown: Desert Pines / Las Vegas, Nev.
On3 Industry Ranking (2020): No. 23 overall, No. 2 tight end, No. 1 in state of Nevada
There’s no way to describe Darnell Washington without using some form of the word “freak.” Simply put, there aren’t many like him coming in at 6-foot-7 and playing this past season at nearly 280 pounds while also being able to catch and run with the ball in his hands. That’s not a sight any defender at the college level wanted to see, and it won’t be in the NFL either.
In three years at Georgia, Washington caught 45 career passes for 774 yards and three touchdowns. His numbers got better and better each year he spent on campus. As a freshman in 2020, he had seven catches in 10 games. The next year as a sophomore, he had 10 games in 11 games, and while his yardage total went down, he found his way into the end zone. However, it all seemed to click for him in 2022 as he put up more catches, yards and touchdowns in the single season than he had in the two previous combined. Washington caught 28 passes for 454 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
While having the ball in his hands certainly is a sight to see, Washington also is one heck of a blocker – which makes sense considering his size. At the end of the line of scrimmage, he gives an extra offensive tackle of sorts. Washington said that was easily the biggest area he grew during his time at Georgia having come from high school where he wasn’t asked to block much at all.
NFL teams look at Washington and see a player who has his best football ahead of him. Yes, he’s shown he can do a little bit of everything, but without another dynamic player at his position like he had with Brock Bowers at Georgia, they’ll be hoping he can do even more. In what’s the deepest tight end class in quite some time, Washington has a chance to come off the board in the first if a team falls in love with him, but more than likely will hear his name called at some point during the second round.