Oct 20, 2013; Landover, MD, USA; Chicago Bears wide receiver Marquess Wilson (10) runs with the ball as Washington Redskins free safety David Amerson (39) makes the tackle in the third quarter at FedEx Field. The Redskins won 45-41. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Rumors: Marquess Wilson this year’s Alshon Jeffery?

The Chicago Bears received a breakout season from second-year wide receiver Alshon Jeffery last season and could have another breakout star on the roster in last year’s seventh round pick Marquess Wilson who will be relied upon heavily to replace the departed Earl Bennett.

“I think he showed that we can work with him and develop him,” Trestman said Sunday at the NFL owners’ meeting. “He’s got the football intelligence that we’re looking for and the ability to be flexible within the offense. He was consistent. So we’ll see how it goes. We’re not anointing people at this point in time. He’s going to have a chance to compete and be a part of what we do after Alshon and Brandon (Marshall). We’ll see how it goes. We’ve got a long way to go but we like (Wilson) and we’re excited about him to develop him and work him.”

Bennett was released after refusing to take a pay cut from his $2.45 million cap charge after he recorded 32 receptions as the team’s third receiver behind Marshall and Jeffery.

Wilson, 21, only had two catches for 13 yards while playing only 75 snaps, but at 6-4, 185-pounds he possesses exceptional size and was playing catch-up after leaving the Washington State Cougars in the middle of his junior season.

In effect, 2013 was a redshirt year for him to acclimate himself to the pro game and to mature physically as well as mentally. Similar statements were made about Jeffery after a rookie season that saw glimpses of brilliance but was dampened by injuries and inconsistencies.

An offseason training with Marshall turned Jeffery into a pro bowl receiver, could a similar transformation be taking place with Wilson as Marshall and Jeffery take him under their wings?

Jay Cutler and the Bears certainly are hopeful that is the case and if he can replicate Bennett’s numbers from a season ago, the Bears can make a case for boasting the best trio of receivers in the NFL.

Tags: Alshon Jeffery Chicago Bears Earl Bennett Marquess Wilson

  • Dale Holmgren

    A lot of people forget that Wilson was only drafted so low because he called out his Wash State coach, Mike Leach; his production under Leach’s predecessor, Paul Wullf, was stellar. Considering Leach is apparently a nutcase who took a gripe against Texas Tech all the way to the Texas Supreme Court and lost, and is a loser at Wash State, perhaps Wilson’s rant against Leach has some foundation, and that the Bears picked up a gem on the cheap.

    Since spring camp in 2012, Leach publicly labeled Wilson soft, inconsistent and unfocused, complaining about Wilson sleepwalked through practices during a bye week. Later in that season, after a verbal thrashing Leach demanded roughly 20 pushups from Wilson. Wilson slacked the exercise.

    Five days later, Leach handed Wilson’s starting spot to a freshman. Leach ran his receivers 2,500 yards every practice — 1,000 more than an average NFL session — and the public criticism he directed at Wilson likely drove Wilson crazy.

    Wilson has huge 9 1/4 inch mitts, almost as big as Jeffrey, and has amazing catching ability.

    • Dr. Johnny Nacho

      Completely agree w/ you Dale. It’s very hard to find credibility when dealing w/ Leach.

      Wilson’s low draft pick supposedly had him on the chopping blocks last year rounding out camp. Would have been a huge mistake and Trestman knew that by keeping him on special teams to learn and grow throughout his rookie year. Working out w/ Marshall and Jeffery down Florida?!?! Only good things can come of that mix.

      There’s only so many balls to go around w/ 15, 17, 83 & 22 already claiming their respective spots but Wilson will be tough to cover in the slot at 6’4″. The Chicago Bears 2014 offense will be extremely explosive.