Dwayne Bowe has always been extremely talented; he just has not always had the quarterback to support his talent. This year, he does. Alex Smith is no superstar, but he is on another echelon from the Kansas City Chiefs quarterbacks in the last two years. The last time Bowe had a solid quarterback, he was second in fantasy points for wide receivers.
And by solid quarterback, I mean Matt Cassel, who is certainly below average.
What is crucial to understand about Bowe is that having a good quarterback is key for players like him to play well. Bowe is a big and strong receiver who needs a quarterback who can put balls in places for him to go get it, but those windows are tight. For smaller, quicker receivers, a decent quarterback can make slant throws or throws where they have step deep.
For big guys like Larry Fitzgerald, a good quarterback is needed to give them a shot at the ball. What is great about those guys is that if you give them a chance, they make plays.
But Bowe never got those chances — now he can.
The counter-argument to this is that Smith is not really much of a quarterback. However, Smith was an above-average quarterback while playing in San Francisco and Andy Reid could make him and the offense even better.
Furthermore, Smith does not need to be incredible, just good. Bowe was second in fantasy points for wide receivers with Cassel at quarterback. He will not reach those heights this year, but should land in the top-10 receivers even though he is going in the sixth round of many drafts. He has value even in the fifth, and especially as a second wide receiver.
Jay Cullen is a writer for RantSports.com. Like him on Facebook at Jay Cullen-Rant Sports, or add him on Google.