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Before It’s Too Late: Marquess Wilson and The Phenom Index

rsz_marquess_wilson

Don’t worry.  You’re not too late to the party.  Yet.

When I first introduced the Phenom Index (PI) everyone was really excited to see how the 2014 rookies stacked up and rightfully so. However, rookies are only one building block of a great dynasty team. Another is the early acquisition of major talent before anyone in your league realizes they’re a major talent. Say hello to Marquess Wilson.

When we looked at 2013 and 2014 rookie receivers through the PI, there were some intriguing results from 2013. Keenan Allen had a great score and was a boss rookie.  DeAndre Hopkins had a fantastic PI and a solid rookie campaign. And then there was Marquess Wilson, who hovered in Allen/Hopkins territory but did virtually nothing last year.

Well, that was last year and, before it’s too late, you should probably get Wilson on your Dynasty rosters. Here’s why…

Marquess Wilson Comparables

This was a ridiculously simple exercise, which I think is a good thing.  The chart below was created by implementing two filters on my 900 wide receiver database:

This is the complete list of people who meet those criteria.  Feel free to sort it.

WROverallCollegeRookie AgePhenom IndexCAR Yds/GCAR TD/GHTWT
Marquess Wilson236Washington State21.32.77697.20.7075194
Sidney Rice44South Carolina21.33.19593.00.9676200
Eric Page270Toledo21.32.98990.70.6669186
Brandin Cooks25Oregon State21.33.43786.10.6370189
Golden Tate60Notre Dame22.42.00784.60.8170199
Jeremy Maclin19Missouri21.62.26182.70.7973198
Greg Lee270Pittsburgh22.22.07079.70.5574201
Kenny Stills144Oklahoma21.72.17968.30.6373194
Jerome Simpson46Coastal Carolina22.92.18560.40.9874199
Percy Harvin22Florida21.62.07656.70.3871192
Jarvis Landry60Louisiana State22.12.15556.50.4772205
Randall Cobb64Kentucky21.42.62155.40.4370191

The Bad News:  Marquess Wilson is similar to two players (Eric Page and Greg Lee) who were complete whiffs. Then again, the fact that they went undrafted should have tipped us off to the fact that scouts didn’t like them and they would probably never get much of a look. After all, draft position is a very significant factor in projecting success. On the other hand, even if Marquess Wilson is a whiff too, he will cost you virtually nothing, so the bad news really isn’t too bad.

The Good News:  Marquess Wilson has some really exciting comparisons. Jeremy Maclin and Sidney Rice, whose physiques are most similar to Wilson, have both posted top-13 receiver seasons in their careers–yes, top13 upside comes with price tag of $0 today. Percy Harvin and Randall Cobb are encouraging comparisons too. They’re not as similar as Wilson, but these are pretty rare circumstances, so let’s not be too picky. If your league allows rookie/free agent drafts, Wilson would almost certainly be picked behind Cooks and Landry, but I’m not sure his long-term outlook is worse than those guys. Besides, Wilson (Sep1992) is only two months older than Jarvis Landry.

Bottom line is that if you blindly picked one of these guys’ names out of a hat, chances are you’d be pleased with what you got.

Marquess Wilson’s Situation

The current Bear’s depth chart looks something like this, via Ourlads:

via ourlads
via ourlads

Alshon Jeffery isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, but, after that, things get interesting.  2014 is Brandon Marshall’s age 30 season and his final under contract with the Bears. Domenik Hixon was just signed, which reportedly will make Weems or Bennett expendable; neither are long term solutions. As we predicted and saw in 2013, the Bears offense is going to be really interesting under Trestman, so the question then becomes:

Is Marquess Wilson going to be the #3 option this year and then start opposite Alshon Jeffery in 2015?

My guess is yes and, if that’s the case, his value will soon begin a two year upward climb. Now is the time to acquire him, before it’s too late.


Jon Moore is a coach at RotoAcademy and creator of The College Football Experiment.  Continue this conversation with him on Twitter or Google+.

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