It has been a frustrating season for the man on the left. On the surface, it would appear that Marshall is having his normal big year, posting 721 yards and 8 TDs on 61 catches through 13 games. But 5 of his 8 TDs were scored over the course of 2 contests and Marshall has seen his targets go down with the emergence of Alshon Jeffrey and Martellus Bennett. Marshall has struggled with injuries for the season's duration and has only posted 100+ yards on two occasions.
Hopes that Marshall had finally gotten healthy and was ready to lead an improbable Bears run to the postseason took a serious blow last night, as Marshall took a hard hit that may have ended his season. The Bears are operating under the belief that Marshall's ribs are fractured, which would likely end his season. Marshall is a tough player and one who is able to gut it out and play through injuries.
However, since the Bears are now 5-8 and have very little to play besides their own pride, it would make very little sense to rush Marshall back from such a serious ailment. So what does this mean for Chicago going forward? Marshall's exit allows them to use the rest of the season to see what they have in Josh Morgan and Marquess Wilson. Morgan has been in the league since 2008 and seems to top out as a #3 WR on his best days.
Wilson, on the other hand, has diamond in the rough potential. The 6'3" Washington State product was the Bears' 7th round selection in 2013 and will likely receive the lion's share of the reps now that Marshall has gone down. These next 3 games are a prime opportunity for Wilson to prove to the Bears that he deserves a larger role in the offense. You may also see Ka'Deem Carey siphon some carries from Matt Forte over the stretch run.
The team has come for the Bears to see what they have in terms of young talent. By allowing Wilson and Carey to get some valuable reps, it increases their chances of being viable contributors in 2015.