The Florida State Seminoles have been a historic program for NFL superstars, with 24 first-round draft picks since 2000 (trailing only Ohio State, Alabama, and Miami). Their defensive players in recent years have quickly ascended to the top of their position, with players like Jalen Ramsey, Derwin James, and Brian Burns emerging as NFL superstars. Will senior defensive tackle Marvin Wilson be the next Florida State high pick in the NFL Draft? Or has his stock soured since his initial ascension?
Marvin Wilson NFL Draft Profile
- Position: Defensive Tackle
- School: Florida State
- Current Year: Senior
- Height: 6’3 1/2″
- Weight: 303 pounds
- Wingspan: 82″
- Arms: 33″
- Hands: 10 1/8″
Tony Pauline’s Marvin Wilson Scouting Report
Positives: Nice-sized interior defensive lineman who watched his game level off the past two years. Plays with proper pad level and gets leverage on opponents. Resilient and rarely off his feet. Explosive, aggressively defends the run and possesses a closing burst. Does not give up on plays and chases the action hard. Attracts a lot of double-team blocks and is tough to handle in the middle of the line.
Negatives: Gets stymied at the point and got little in the way of penetration last year. Not much of a pass rusher and doesn’t get outside the box to make plays.
Analysis: Wilson looked like a potential star in the making throughout his sophomore campaign yet never elevated his game. He possesses the size and tenacity to line up in a four-man front or as a nose tackle, and he would be best as a gap occupier at the next level.
Marvin Wilson Player Profile
Defensive tackle Marvin Wilson was an elite high-school recruit, and one of Jimbo Fisher’s biggest recruiting wins of his tenure at Florida State. Wilson was the No. 1 defensive tackle prospect and No. 1 recruit from the rich football state of Texas.
He was ranked sixth nationally on 24/7’s composite rankings, behind players like Jaelan Phillips, Najee Harris, Cam Akers (another FSU commit), Alex Leatherwood, and Foster Sarell. He ranked ahead of the No. 2 and No. 3 picks in the 2020 NFL Draft, with Chase Young and Jeff Okudah seventh and eighth, respectively.
Wilson exploded onto the recruiting scene as a sophomore when he posted 64 tackles and 14 sacks, matching up with the best of the best. He helped his team make the playoffs every year in high school.
Wilson accumulated 42 sacks in his career, displaying a massive frame combined with agility and above-average strength. Getting invites to the Rivals Challenge in Atlanta in 2016 and the Opening Camp sponsored by Nike rocketed his recruiting status skywards and spawned a brand for Wilson.
Marvin Wilson’s college football career at FSU
Wilson was given the name “Real Life Goon” after shouting the phrase during the Rivals challenge. The phrase helped him market himself better nationally, and trended on Twitter after the event. Wilson chose the Florida State Seminoles over LSU, Oklahoma, and Ohio State, in the form of using custom Jordan-brand Sneakers. One of the biggest factors in his decision: FSU’s honey-fried chicken.
“They had this thing called honey fried chicken,” said Wilson. “I was like, ‘That sounds kinda suspect,’ and I got one piece. I bit into that one piece of chicken and went and grabbed the pan, and we ate that whole pan of honey fried chicken. That’s probably the best chicken I’ve ever had in my life.”
Wilson is a big fan of poetry as well, having won a Silver Key from Scholastic Arts and Writing. He also exhibits poetry in motion on the field. During the 2019 season, he racked up 8.5 tackles for loss and 5 sacks. Additionally, he demonstrated disruptive ability with 4 pass breakups. He could have been a first-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft but elected to stay in school and play for the now Mike Norvell-led Florida State Seminoles.
Senior season struggles impact 2021 NFL Draft stock
Prior to the season, Marvin Wilson had garnered first-round NFL Draft consideration. A physically dominant defensive tackle for the majority of his FSU career, he seemed primed to be one of the first taken at his position. However, a combination of injuries and the disrupted college football season impacted his stock. Following a leg injury, he opted out of the season early.
However, his draft stock descent is predicated on more than that. In too many games this last season he just didn’t appear to be the same dominant player. Although he faced a stellar Notre Dame offensive line, they completely neutralized him. The same can be said against Miami.
In reality, the only good game that Wilson had in his senior season was against North Carolina, where he showed glimpses of his game-wrecking ability even though they didn’t show up in the box score.
Senior Bowl Performance
Defensive tackle Marvin Wilson had the opportunity to recover his NFL Draft stock somewhat at the Senior Bowl. However, he struggled in early practices before injury ruled him out of later practices and subsequently, the game itself. Here’s more from the American Team Practice Report:
“Marvin Wilson came into the Senior Bowl with the most name recognition among interior defensive linemen, and he left with arguably the least confidence. Onlookers hoped to see at least some semblance of upside from Wilson, but even that was in short supply. He measured in with less size than expected, and in one-on-ones, he was unable to string together victories. Wilson didn’t flash dominant traits, and he also struggled to disengage and find clearance. His ineffective week won’t do him any favors in a few months. He looked like a Day 3 pick.”
Marvin Wilson’s fit in the 2021 NFL Draft
Wilson’s physical tools are enough to fit in any defensive front. He can consistently two-gap with the best of them and eats contact up for breakfast. He’s shown an ability to dominate through the B-gap like a 3-tech. It might be better to play him closer to 1-tech because of his average get-off, but there’s no reason Wilson can’t plug-and-play inside.
His work ethic and intangibles are excellent. However, his injury history and play regression over the last year could prove extremely costly. Once considered a first-round talent, there is the distinct possibility that Marvin Wilson falls to the third day of the 2021 NFL Draft.
Wilson’s athletic testing didn’t help a great deal, either. At Florida State’s pro day, Wilson logged a Relative Athletic Score of just 5.46. He had a decent 40-yard dash time, but his explosiveness numbers were poor, as were his agility times. This came as he weighed in over ten pounds lighter than he did at the Senior Bowl.
Some teams that could use the Florida State defensive tackle’s help are the Dallas Cowboys, Cleveland Browns, Atlanta Falcons, Buffalo Bills, and the Los Angeles Rams.
Want more 2021 NFL Draft prospect news? Want to do your own mock draft?
Dive into PFN’s Free NFL Mock Draft Simulator and test your own drafting acumen. Continue to visit Pro Football Network for NFL news and in-depth analysis. Also, be sure to follow us on Twitter (@PFN365) to stay in the loop on all things college football and the NFL Draft landscape.