Nearly nine months after an infamous departure from the collegiate football scene, former Coug Marquess Wilson is making headlines as an NFL wide receiver.
Wilson joined the Chicago Bears as a seventh-round draft pick last April, and is already proving to be an asset to the team as a rookie at 6-foot-4 and 184 pounds.
He executes long drives down the field, as shown in the preseason opening game against Carolina on Aug. 9. Wilson had a team high of four catches for 82 yards for the Bears in the 24-17 preseason loss.
“It feels good, but in the back of your mind you know nobody’s safe. You just have to go out there and perform every day,” said Wilson, according to Visaliatimesdelta.com. “I haven’t done anything yet. It’s just football, and you just build off of everything you did in the last practice or the last game and try and get better.”
Wilson has been praised for catching the ball with his hands, rather than against his pads, which can cause the ball to be jarred loose on impact. Wilson also has open-field vision, with eight career touchdowns of 50 yards or more, according to CBS Chicago.
Wilson proved himself as the Cougars’ all-time leader in receiving yards (3,207), while ranking second in receptions (189) and touchdown catches (23) in WSU history, according to ESPN Chicago.
After his exit from WSU’s football program, Wilson’s biggest challenge will be showing that he is a coachable player. As a rookie, he displayed his talent and showed signs he can contribute to an NFL offense.
“Definitely, but I think not just me, everybody has to prove themselves coming out of college. I mean, you’re a rookie, and you’re not known. You’ve got to build your rep up again,” Wilson said in an interview with rrstar.com. “I moved on from it, and I’m just waiting for the next opportunity to play football.”