Marques Colston, the wide receiver from New Orleans will hit unrestricted free agency on March 13th. While some believe that he will receive less interest from other teams because he has excelled only in the Saints unique system, I think that Colston could be a superb fit in Jacksonville.
Colston came out of the 7th round to the Saints in 2006. That season he lit up opposing teams for a total of 1,038 yards in 14 games. Over six seasons in the NFL he has only had one season, 2008, when he did not record over 1,000 yards. That year he had 760 yards in only 11 games, averaging a career high of 16.2 yards per reception.
While Colston has excelled in New Orleans largely due to Drew Brees and a very pass heavy scheme, Colston has shown that he is dependable for his quarterback. He often makes catches that bail out the quarterback, relying on great athleticism to get in position to make a play on the ball. For just a taste of this, check out his highlight reel.
Colston is not only good at making tough grabs, he’s also an excellent possession receiver with the ball in his hands. He frequently forces the defense to shift, using his body well to throw defenders off target when he’s running toward the endzone. He has also been reliable while doing this, fumbling less than once per season (five total in six years).
The athleticism of Colston outshines any receiver currently on the Jaguars’ roster. He immediately fills the massive void at the #2 receiver spot and brings balance to receiving schemes by ensuring that the corners have to worry about him catching and running after catching the ball. With a strong running game, something the Saints mostly had due to their strong passing game, Colston should be able to slip behind linebackers and defensive backs and get open for the young Blaine Gabbert to make a play with his arm.
While not a true #1 receiver, definitely more of a #2, Colston bolsters a team in the receiving game. It may be enticing for Colston to stay with the New Orleans Saints, given his previous success with them, but I think he would equally enjoy the abilities of a young quarterback and earning the spotlight on a growing team.
Look for Colston to be a high interest for the Jaguars front office and look for him to reciprocate by entertaining offers. Unfortunately, other teams should be in the market for his skills and may have more appealing situations for the young receiver.
- Luke N. Sims