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June 15, 2024

Eagles rookie NFL player comparisons: WR Johnny Wilson

Johnny Wilson is a big-boded receiver coming out of Florida State who can play out wide or in the slot. Who is his NFL comp?

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Johnny-Wilson-Eagles-minicamp-2 Colleen Claggett/PhillyVoice

Eagles WR Johnny Wilson

As we do every offseason, we'll be comparing each of the Philadelphia Eagles' rookies to current or former NFL players. Today we'll find a comp for sixth-round wide receiver Johnny Wilson.


CB Quinyon Mitchell | DB Cooper DeJean | EDGE Jalyx Hunt
RB Will Shipley | WR Ainias Smith | LB Jeremiah Trotter | OG Trevor Keegan

At 6'6, 231, Wilson is a huge freak of nature playing receiver. His career began at Arizona State, but he transferred to FSU for the 2022 season. In 2022, he had 43 catches for 897 yards and (20.9 YPC) and 5 TDs. Here are most of those receptions:

In 2023, Wilson had a somewhat disappointing 41 catches for 617 yards (15.0 YPC) and 2 TDs. There was some thought that Wilson could move to tight end because of his size, but the Eagles announced him as a wide receiver, so that's where he'll begin his pro career. After watching him a bit during spring practices, I am of the opinion that he moves pretty well for a receiver his size. His Combine measurables were also impressive for a 6'6 receiver:

Wilson can play outside, but FSU also used him at times as a big slot. He can make plays down the field with his size (again, 20.9 YPC in 2022), but he's also a red zone target.

As a reminder, this rookie comp series is not meant to be predictive of each players' success or lack thereof in the NFL. It is merely an exercise to say, "This rookie reminds me of (fill in some recognizable name) because of X, Y, and Z." With that disclaimer in place, Wilson has a lot of similarities to Marques Colston, the former late Day 3 Saints receiver who played in the NFL for 10 years, six of which he topped 1000 yards. (I also considered Darren Waller as a comp, since he began his NFL career as a wide receiver before moving to tight end.)

To begin, it's kind of remarkable how closely Wilson's and Colston's athletic Combine measurables align:

 MeasurableJohnny Wilson Marques Colston 
Height 6'6 3/8 6'5 
Weight 231 224 
Arm length 35 3/8" 33 3/8" 
Hand size 10" 9 5/8" 
40-yard dash 4.52 4.50 
10-yard split 1.55 1.6 
Vertical jump 37" 37" 
Broad jump 128" 123" 

In New Orleans, Colston could play outside, or from the slot, where he worked the seams for Drew Brees for a decade. The one area where Colston was great — and where Wilson will have to improve if he's going to make it in the NFL — was his sure hands in contested catch situations.

Next up: C Dylan McMahon.

Eagles thoughts on A.J. Brown, QB contracts and more

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