Washington Commanders Select Illinois DT Johnny Newton With No. 36 Pick in NFL Draft

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ASHBURN, Va. — The Washington Commanders got back to work at the NFL Draft looking to add more talent to quarterback Jayden Daniels who is already highlighting the class of 2024.

While many coveted an offensive tackle for the Commanders to start Day 2 there was speculation the team may go a different direction after seven of them came off the board in the first round alone.

Washington general manager Adam Peters admitted the team had been working the phones to trade back into the first round but a deal never materialized.


Oct 21, 2023; Champaign, Illinois, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini defensive tackle Jer’Zhan Newton

Because of that fact, Peters found himself holding all five Day 2 picks and spent the first one, at No. 36 overall, on Illinois defensive tackle Jer’Zhan ‘Johnny’ Newton, as announced by Hall of Fame legend Darrell Green.

While first round picks are often regarded as players expected to make immediate – often times starting – impacts on teams, those taken on Days 2 and 3 get a little more wiggle room before being expected to take on those roles.

Still, even with that consideration and given the state of the team coming off a four-win season, this isn’t your typical scenario and Newton is going to be looked at by many to be an immediate contributor to an improved Commanders squad in 2024.

The only question may be, where, as Washington looks stacked inside with Daron Payne and Jonathan Allen already on the roster.

Stick withCommanderGamedayfor more coverage of the Washington Commanders throughout the NFL Draft.

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