How good is Russell WIlson? That is a question that is going to be debated and dissected for a long time. Especially with a sure 100 million dollar contract on the horizon. The same contract that will cause Seattle to lose some of their core players. After all everyone wants to get paid right. Does this mean these players are elite? Elite is a word that Seahawk fans feel Wilson is. But what is an elite QB? Or something close to that level and is WIlson on that level?
Let’s take the 4 qb’s from the final four, Wilson, Tom Brady, Andrew Luck and Aaron Rodgers. If any of the other 3 would suffer a season ending injury would their teams keep winning? The answer is no. Other QB’s who make big money fall into that category. Eli Manning, Peyton Manning, Big Ben and Drew Brees. Take Joe Flacco. He got a big contract based on his playoff performances and his flawless run to the Super Bowl a few seasons ago. Flacco is average at best in the regular season but elevates his team in the playoffs. Also the offense is built around their performances specifically. They are option 1 and their teams can’t win games if they don’t perform.
Russell Wilson is not the most important person on his offense. The team is not built around his skills. That team comes and goes with Marshawn Lynch and the defense. Just look at the NFC Conference Championship game vs the Packers. Lynch was shut down for most of the game. WIlson was asked to win that game and he played miserably. He didn’t play well until Lynch opened up the offense. Now Wilson is a fine QB. He really knows how to manage a game well. But he is not a carry the team kind of QB like the other guys above are. Even at Wisconsin where they are a running team with their 300 pound offensive line and big bruising running backs.
I am not saying Wilson is a useless player. He is no Trent Dilfer who’s only job was to not lose the game. But as he is heading to his second straight Super Bowl which happened to be the easiest and luckiest path I have ever seen he is in line for a huge pay day. Even if his stats don’t add up to other top QB’s. Seahawk fans will point to the same stat over and over again. His record against other great QB’s and some other stat category made up to justify his greatness. And Seattle has to pay him his money. They have no choice. And it will cost them some key players.
The game got away from Seattle against Green Bay. Wilson had 4 picks. Some were his fault and some weren’t. Some throws were awful. If Seattle didn’t have the great defense they have that game is a blowout in the first half. There is no disputing that. Wilson is not as bad as he was in that game. But he is not a QB you can say we are throwing the ball 40 times a game and everything we do as an offense relies on his success. He is not that kind of player. Seahawk fans understandably love him and if I was a Seahawk fan I would love him too.
I recently debated a Cowboy fan whether you would rather have Romo or Wilson. He said he would rather have Wilson. I found myself in the surreal position of defending Romo. This is a QB I have put down and destroyed because of his lack of presence in big games and his vintage Romo turnover moments. But if you put Romo on the Seahawks with the way that defense plays and the Beast Mode Mojo of Lynch he won’t have to win games on his own. It was my contention that Wilson would have less success with the Cowboys than Romo did even though Dez Bryant and Jason Witten are on the field. But I can put a lot of QBs on the Seahawks and they would win just like Wilson. Simply because Wilson is not the reason why Seattle wins. We have seen in NY Rex Ryan take a mediocre QB like Mark Sanchass to two AFC Conference Championship games on the back of a good defense and running game. Does Wilson make plays yes. Does he make plays with his legs yes. Is he a nice guy and a endearing clean cut figure who can effectively be the face of his franchise yes. Is he ELITE no.
This is not a put down and trash Wilson story. As a Seahawk fan told me that Wilson is elite and should be ranked ahead of Andrew Luck because Wilson has won a Super Bowl well there you go. Are Trent Dilfer, Jay Schroeder, Doug Williams and Brad Johnson elite quarterbacks because they won Super Bowls? Is Eli Manning an elite QB? He won 2 Super Bowls and played exceptionally well in both Super Bowl runs where the Giants won every game except one on the road. Is Dan Marino not elite because he never won? That is my point.
Clearly Seattle is perfectly built and each players strengths are exploited and each weakness is hidden. Give them credit for making great draft picks especially late in the draft. They had done it a few years now. But I would just like to see how good Wilson would be if he had to throw the ball as much as Andrew Luck does?
On Monday Seattle and Wilson could be celebrating back to back championships and whatever I say or think won’t matter to him or any other Seahawk fan or player. But one day and that day is coming sooner and sooner Wilson will have to be the guy who is the reason Seattle wins.