Cardinals take Gators cornerback Marco Wilson in the fourth round. Here's his scouting report.
A Florida defensive back has been drafted for the sixth consecutive year, with Marco Wilson continuing the streak.
The Arizona Cardinals selected Wilson 136th overall in the fourth round of the 2021 NFL Draft. He was a multi-year starter for the Gators and the fourth true freshmen in UF history to start at cornerback on opening day.
Wilson finished his career with 36 games played, collecting 103 tackles with three interceptions. He had a disappointing season in 2020, but redeemed himself with his Pro Day workout at Florida.
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Here’s what Wilson is bringing to the Cardinals.
Marco Wilson Positives
The 6-foot, 191-pound Wilson checks the boxes for athleticism, speed and strength. He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.37 seconds at Pro Day with a jaw-dropping 43.5 vertical jump, the fifth-best mark among cornerbacks since 1999. It’s no surprise that NFL Media's Lance Zierlein describes him as an “explosive leaper” with the ability to shade the jump ball. Wilson, who also posted 26 reps on the bench press, has plenty of play strength and is forceful at the catch point according to Zierlein. He wrote that Wilson has smooth hips in transitions, recognizes route progressions clearly from zone coverage and jumps the slant route well with good closing burst. Wilson showed the position flexibility to play both cornerback and nickel at Florida. He’s the brother of NFL defensive back Quincy Wilson and son of former Miami Hurricanes cornerback Chad Wilson.
Marco Wilson Concerns
Wilson’s best season was as a freshman in 2017. Two games into his sophomore season, he suffered his second torn ACL in four years. Wilson recovered and started the past two seasons, however, and his injury history hasn’t hurt his speed or vertical. After making three interceptions in 2019, he regressed as a senior and wasn’t as effective in man coverage. Wilson was beat on two deep balls in the loss at Texas A&M, while his unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against LSU after a late third-down stop cost Florida the game. Zierlein wrote that Wilson was late getting into position multiple times pre-snap, plays a little too upright in space and needs a lot of work in run-support. Zierlein also criticized him for not being competitive enough in coverage pursuit, saying Wilson “simply looks too lackadaisical” at times.
Final thoughts on Marco Wilson
Wilson has the makings of an NFL cornerback, but needs to put it all together at the next level. Given his speed and athletic traits, he possesses the skill set to be a much better defender than he was in 2020. Wilson has the size and leaping ability to win 50-50 balls, but gave up a few costly catches last season despite being in position to make the play. Zierlein wrote that Wilson needs to do a more consistent job of crowding his targets and maintaining his positioning through the rep, which he can be coached up on as a rookie.