Russell Wilson's gamble paid off last season, telling Major League Baseball and the Colorado Rockies they could wait while he completed his eligibility as a transfer, and instant starter, at Wisconsin.
Wilson is rolling the dice again, telling the New York Times he's committing to a professional football career. Wilson informed the Rockies, who drafted Wilson while he was a two-sport star at North Carolina State in 2010, and general manager Dan O'Dowd of his decision Tuesday.
"I want to put all my focus in football and see where it takes me," Wilson told the Times on Wednesday. "I know that I have the talent, aptitude and leadership to succeed on the next level."
Wilson will begin training at the IMG Academy with Chris Weinke, who tutored No. 1 overall draft pick Cam Newton last spring, next week. First, he'll be married this weekend.
Evaluators told NFLDraftScout.com's Len Pasquarelli that Wilson would be one of the most intriguing passers available in the draft. He'll have a lot to prove -- and potentially much to earn -- by participating in the Senior Bowl.
Entering the Rose Bowl, NFLDraftScout.com rated Wilson 185th overall and 10th among quarterbacks, primarily because of his partial commitment to baseball. There are also concerns about his height, but Wilson had a school-record efficiency rating of 191.6 with 31 touchdowns and three interceptions in 13 games with the Badgers. He also had 31 touchdown passes as a sophomore at N.C. State.
Ryan Tannehill of Texas A&M is the top-ranked senior on the NFLDraftScout.com board, followed by Nick Foles (Arizona), who is ranked 48th overall and Kirk Cousins (Michigan State), who is ranked 62nd overall.
Wilson said he was told he'd be a middle-round pick by the NFL Draft Advisory Board. Gil Brandt of NFL.com graded Wilson as a fourth-rounder.