What are your thoughts on Marquess Wilson out of Washington State?
Personally, when it comes to "big receivers," my favorites are Da'Rick Rogers and Marquess Wilson. Rogers is a really good prospect, but the character concerns are a problem. If he checks out in the pre-draft process I would be very interested... he has a lot of Marques Colston to his game IMO, where he doesn't have great vertical speed but has good quickness out of breaks for his size and does a really good job in the seams and middle of the field. There's also some Anquan Boldin there.
Marquess Wilson is a complicated prospect. If he wouldn't have quit on Washington State he'd probably be a 2nd round pick, possibly even a 1st if he closed the year out really well. His route running is excellent, body control is probably the best in the class, and he has steel traps for hands. He needs to put on 15-20 pounds of muscle, but he looks like he has the frame to do that and he had no trouble going across the middle and making contested catches even at 6'4 180.
I like Wilson as a football prospect and would be happy to see the Ravens draft him with a mid-to-late pick. Him getting drafted would mean that somebody felt comfortable enough with his background check to move forward. Frankly, Mike Leach is an absolute creep and I take anything that happened with him with a huge grain of salt. I don't necessarily believe all the accusations that have followed him around, but there's a ton of smoke to suggest some sort of fire.
I'd rather roll the dice on the taller, heavier, and more muscular Tommy Streeter than Wilson.
I agree with bmore in that Wilson does run nice routes and has some nice leaping ability, but at 180lbs and 6'4" you really have to question his durability. If they want to bring him in as a UDFA and give him some time to put on weight, that's fine, but putting on 20-25lbs without losing speed is not an easy feat at all. He may just not have the genes to play in the NFL.
I don't see durability as a huge issue for Wilson. The kid has never missed a game in college despite routinely going across the middle and taking a lot of hits.
A lot of guys with Wilson's spindly/lanky frame have to deal with pain tolerance issues from lingering injuries. If you watch Torrey Smith, almost every time he takes a hit he comes up limping. He injured his ankle in 2010 and it still gives him trouble, but he plays through it and it doesn't really affect his play. It's strictly pain tolerance. Smith and Wilson have VERY similar body types, although Torrey is a little better developed in his upper body.
Wilson definitely has some uneven tape and has had some drops, but look at the way they use him. Virtually every catch he makes is in traffic/contested and he has been Washington State's ENTIRE offense since his freshman year. He could have been a lot better with a little more help on offense... and that's something I value highly in a prospect--his ability to produce despite not having help around him. It's like the "anti-USC" effect.
Even so, there are definitely WR prospects I like better than Wilson. I don't think this is a really good class at WR honestly, there are just a few diamonds in the rough, and most of the top prospects are overrated. The things I look for in a WR prospect are the things you can't really teach--body control, quickness out of breaks, and mental acuity. I think Wilson has those to a better degree than some other prospects and I think he's a good scheme fit as a guy who can go across the middle and get YAC, but also make plays on the sidelines in vertical passing.
My favorite WR prospect in the class is Stedman Bailey. After that, probably Da'Rick Rogers. Beyond that it's kind of just a clump of Quinton Patton, Ryan Swope, Kenny Stills, Marquess Wilson, and maybe a few other guys that I have to watch more.
BPR, curious to hear your thoughts on Cobi Hamilton...i havent watched him a bunch but when i did i was suprised with his fluidity and speed after the catch but it was mainly drags, seam stuff and quick slants. Havent seen him run many other routes.
I don't understand where you're seeing that similarity. Not only is Torrey about 3-4" shorter, but he is also at least 20lbs heavier. The pain tolerance thing, I get, but that is subjective. Wilson can go over the middle, but how is he going to go over the middle with someone like Kam Chancellor or Ryan Clark ready to take his block off? I actually think Wilson is built a lot like Randy Moss. Both are tall, lean, and lanky. However, Moss is still 205-210lbs. IF Wilson can put on weight, then he could be a similar receiver to Moss.
I'm just not interested in Wilson for the Ravens.
If the Ravens go receiver, I'd really like to see them (like you) go for Stedman Bailey. I think he may be the best all-around receiver in this draft. After him, Quinton Patton, Markus Wheaton, Ryan Swope, Connor Vernon, and maybe a late round flier on Roy Roundtree could work.
Generally, he needs polish (like just about everyone else of course) but it's incredibly hard for a track guy to "develop" quick feet or choppier strides.
I doubt Wilson will come in at 6'4 at the Combine... probably more like 6'2 and change, 6'3 tops. The 185-ish weight number is probably accurate. Randy Moss was like 6'4 190 when he came into the league. Wilson is probably going to have to put on a bit of weight, but the college tape tells a lot more about his durability than the number at the bottom of the scale.
But hey, it doesn't really matter anyway. Wilson might not even get drafted, and if he does it will probably be in the 5th round or so... not really a big deal. I agree there are better prospects, I just think Wilson is one of the better "bigger" receivers. That's more a statement of how underwhelming guys like Keenan Allen and Justin Hunter are, IMO.