Darnell Washington says there ‘ain’t no roof’ on George Pickens’ potential

Former Georgia tight end Darnell Washington was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the third round of April’s 2023 NFL draft. In addition to offensive tackle Broderick Jones, who was a first round pick in the same draft, Washington also joins former Georgia wide receiver George Pickens, a second round selection by the Steelers in the 2022 draft.

Pickens had a sensational rookie season. He finished 2022 with 801 receiving yards and 5 total touchdowns, finding nice chemistry with quarterback Kenny Pickett, who was also in his rookie year.

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Washington recently spoke about Pickens and his talent while on All Things Covered, a CBS Sports podcast hosted by former Steelers cornerback Bryant McFadden and current Steelers cornerback Patrick Peterson.

You’ll love what he had to say about Pickens:

“His potential, ain’t no roof on it,” Washington said. “Like with him, I saw him in Georgia do crazy stuff against the defense that we just had… It’s crazy, just like his ball skills [are] just crazy. I can’t even explain it.

You know how DBs play through their hands or things like that? With him, I saw him time, he’ll fake act like the ball’s fading on him, and he’ll just cut in like, what the hell? Like at the last moment. It’s just like his ball skills just make him unique, you know? When people say, ‘Oh, I have crazy ball skills.’ Like he legit has it.”

Pickens will now look to take his game to the next level. Bleacher Report recently placed him on its All NFL Underrated Team for 2023.


Washington, who stands at 6 feet, 7 inches and weighs 270 pounds, was ranked 38th in Mel Kiper’s pre-draft prospect rankings, but fell to the Steelers at the 93rd overall pick in the third round.

Peterson also spoke about Washington, and said the tight end was the “steal of the draft” and has the potential to become an integral part of the Steelers’ offensive lineup.

“To me, I thought that was the steal of the draft,” Peterson said.

Washington’s blocking prowess is one of the reasons the Steelers jumped at the chance to add him to their offense. Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin praised Washington’s mindset:


“I think the awesome thing about him besides his measurables is his mindset,” Tomlin said. “Here’s a guy that I think maybe has ‘sixth offensive lineman’ on his license plate. He embraces the things that come with being who he is, and knowledge of self and embracing that I think is one of the things that made him attractive, besides the unique physical traits and the things that he’s been able to accomplish. The mindset, the willingness, too, is equally exciting.”

Washington might not come in and have a Rookie of the Year season, but he’s a guy who should make a big difference based off his size and athletic ability alone. He’s a blocker, but Georgia fans know he can catch anything thrown his way and pick up yards after the catch. His NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year odds read plus-10,000, per FanDuel.

A former five-star prospect out of Las Vegas, Nevada, Washington came to Georgia as a member of the class of 2020. He ranked as the No. 23 overall player coming out of high school.

He clocked a 4.64 40-yard dash (sixth among tight ends) with a 4.08 20-yard shuttle (first). Washington posted a 10-foot-2 broad jump and a 31-inch vertical jump. His 83.75-inch wingspan is the largest ever for a tight end at the combine. Additionally, his 11-inch hands are the second-largest ever for a tight end at the combine.

Washington caught 28 passes for 454 yards (16.2 average) and two touchdowns in 2022.

Story originally appeared on UGA Wire