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Wide receiver James Washington seems to be reinventing himself with the Dallas Cowboys after things did not go according to plan for him while he was with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The new Dallas Cowboys wide receiver, James Washington, who was very popular in college, reflected on what went wrong for him during his time at the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The native Texan and Biletnikoff winner, who came out of Oklahoma State, often got lost in the shuffle in Pittsburgh. Despite the Steelers being a franchise where wide receivers typically thrive, Washington never lived up to the hype as Martavis Bryant’s replacement in the 2018 NFL Draft. He joins the Cowboys on a one-year deal in hopes of proving to everyone that he can play better.
“I feel like with everything that happened in Pittsburgh, I didn’t really show my full self,” Washington said in an interview with USA TODAY. “We had a crowded room at the reception. But nothing against anyone else, I feel there is a lot of meat left on the bone. I did not really manage to develop myself fully and take steps as I would like.”
“I want to take full advantage of this opportunity in Dallas. Do what I can so they get 110 percent of me and I can reach my full potential.”
Washington joins a receiving corps with a previous first-round pick in CeeDee Lamb and a newly paid veteran in Michael Gallup, but one that is without Amari Cooper, who was swapped for the Cleveland Browns for a fifth-round pick.
James Washington reflected on what went wrong for him with the Steelers
Overall, it feels like a combination of Pittsburgh having established No. 1 and No. 2 reception options upon its arrival, as well as Ben Roethlisberger’s remarkable decline as a fit. Washington may have won Biletnikoff while in Oklahoma State, but he did not rob Antonio Brown and JuJu Smith-Schuster on the Steelers’ received depth chart right out of the gate like a rookie.
Although Brown left and Smith-Schuster went back, Roethlisberger was injured and it was The Mason Rudolph Show with some Duck Hodges sprinkled in there. While Washington was playing his best ball with his college teammate slinging him in the pigskin, it became clear that Rudolph would not be the heir to Big Ben in Steel City. When Roethlisberger returned, things took a turn.
The arrival of Chase Claypool and the appearance of Diontae Johnson got Washington lost in the shuffle. He was never able to build the relationship with Roethlisberger that he had with Rudolph. In short, Washington could never be more than No. 3 with wide receivers at any point of his run with the Steelers. Good for him to get a new opportunity to start on a fresh start with the Cowboys.
It does not look good to fail as a receiver with Pittsburgh, but Washington is looking to prove itself.