NFL: Marques Colston or Brandon Marshall...Best Receiver for the Money?

John LewisSenior Writer IJune 5, 2008

Two days after Terrell Owens signed his three-year extension with the Dallas Cowboys, worth about $27 million, oh and a $7 million signing bonus, that got me thinking about who is the best wide receiver for the money...and it's not T.O. or Ocho Cinco.

Looking at the numbers and salaries, two players stand out the most in this argument: Marques Colston of the New Orleans Saints and Brandon Marshall of the Denver Broncos. In 2007, it was reported that Colston made $372,760 against the cap, and Marshall made $471,360.

Let's go to the tale of the tape.

Colston was the seventh-round pick, No. 252, out of Hofstra in 2006. He came in  with few expectations from his teammates. Well, it was obvious that Colston had high hopes for himself, and after a trade that sent Donte Stallworth packing, Colston was inserted into the lineup.

In October of his rookie season, he was named Offensive Rookie of the Month, and by Week Nine, he had 54 catches, 869 yards receiving, and seven touchdowns. After missing two games with an ankle injury, he still managed to catch 70 passes for 1,038 yards and eight touchdowns, and he finished third in the Offensive Rookie of the Year award.

His second year in the league would be no different, as Colston set a team record for most receptions, 98, tied the team record for most touchdown catches with 11, had 1,202 yards receiving, and set the NFL record for most receptions in a WRs first two seasons with 168.

Brandon Marshall broke into the league as the Denver Broncos' fourth-round pick, No. 119, out of the University of Central Florida in 2006. His first year in the league didn't get started on the right foot as he suffered a slight tear in his PCL and only got into the starting lineup for one game. 

However, his sophomore season showed why he was compared to T.O., as he caught 103 passes for 1,325 yards and seven touchdowns. Marshall also placed second in the NFL in yards with 505, first in number of times targeted with 170, and tied for fourth in catches that led to first downs with 70.

So who gets the distinction for having the best hands for the money? In my mind, Marques Colston gets the slight nod as best receiver for the money simply because he's put up solid numbers in both of seasons in the NFL. 

Things may change if Marshall has another season with over 100 catches, but for now he'll have to settle for second best WR for the money.

What do you think?