Seahawks' Wilson was worth the wait in draft

  • Article by: MARK CRAIG , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 15, 2013 - 8:35 AM

The Seahawks gambled he would fall in the draft.

 

With the 47th pick in the 2012 NFL draft, the Seattle Seahawks selected Bobby Wagner, linebacker, Utah State.

No offense, Bobby, but your new coach, Pete Carroll, wanted no part of you on that April day 19 months ago. His sights were fixed on a smaller prize of greater potential value: 5-11, 206-pound Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson.

“It killed us not to take Russell in the second round,” Carroll said Wednesday. “But we made it through [to the third round].”

But first, Carroll and the Seahawks would have to weather 27 picks before going back on the clock. The Vikings were among those who passed, taking cornerback Josh Robinson 66th overall. The Bills also joined them at No. 69 (receiver T.J. Graham), while the No. 70 Jaguars (punter Brian Anger) and No. 74 Chiefs (offensive tackle Donald Stephenson) followed.

Then, with the 75th pick in the 2012 NFL draft, the Seahawks selected Wilson, or, as Carroll calls him, the “franchise changer.” And that pick came just a month after the Seahawks had appeared to settle their quarterback situation by signing Matt Flynn as their starter via free agency. “I’m just glad that [General Manager] John Schneider figured it out and led the charge,” Carroll said. “We didn’t want to miss a chance on [Wilson], but John is extremely savvy and knew the lay of the land. He knew we could do it. He couldn’t have been more correct in every way, from evaluating him to determining where to take him, that he was a great kid and that he could change the fortunes of the franchise.”

Twenty-six regular-season games later, Wilson, 24, leads the NFC-leading Seahawks (9-1) into a home game against the 2-7 Vikings, whose race for quarterback of the future is a neck-and-neck-and-neck battle between current starter Christian Ponder, recently signed Josh Freeman and a prospect in next year’s draft.

Wilson enters the game as the fifth-ranked quarterback in the league. He’s completing 63.4 percent of his passes (163 of 324) for 2,132 yards (8.3 per attempt), 17 touchdowns, six interceptions and a 101.8 passer rating. Throw in the league’s No. 2-ranked running game led by Marshawn “Beast Mode” Lynch and the probable Seattle debut of Percy Harvin and, well, things could get troublesome for the Vikings’ 30th-ranked defense on Sunday at CenturyLink Field.

“Their quarterback really, really makes a big difference,” Vikings coach Leslie Frazier said. “He makes everybody better.”

So, once again, quarterback-needy teams throughout the league are left looking at the evolution of another former hidden gem and asking whether they could have done anything differently during a draft preparation process that’s already beyond exhaustive.

Carroll was asked to name the greatest trait about Wilson that so many teams missed on draft day. He chose to look at it another way.

“I think it’s what they feared,” Carroll said. “They feared that he wasn’t big enough to play. There’s nothing about his game that isn’t just extraordinary. … They missed it because of the factor that he wasn’t as tall as people thought he needed to be. We didn’t care about that. We wanted to know how it was going to pan out. We weren’t really sure. That’s why we [took] him in the third round.”

Wilson was asked the same question.

“One of the things I always pride myself on,” he said, “is always being poised in clutch situations.”

Wilson said he aspires to be “like Tom Brady and Drew Brees and the Peyton Mannings of the world.” To do that, he said, one needs to do more than put up good numbers.

“When situations arise, you want your quarterback to be the calm in the storm,” he said. “That’s what I try to bring to the table.”

Since 1970, the record for wins by a quarterback in his first two seasons is 22, by Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger. Wilson sits at 20 with six more regular-season games left. He’s also 12-0 at home and 16-2 in his past 18 games. And in those past 18 games, his 109.5 passer rating ranks second in the NFL behind Manning’s 112.7.

“I believe in my talent,” Wilson said. “I believe that my height doesn’t define my skill set. I believe that I can do everything I can to play at a high level.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Mets 12:05 PM
Atlanta
Philadelphia 12:05 PM
NY Yankees
Detroit 12:05 PM
Baltimore
Toronto 12:05 PM
Pittsburgh
Cincinnati 2:05 PM
Cleveland
San Diego 2:05 PM
Seattle
Chicago WSox 2:05 PM
Los Angeles
Kansas City 2:05 PM
Texas
Oakland 2:05 PM
San Francisco
Wisc-Milwaukee 2:05 PM
Milwaukee
Arizona 2:10 PM
Colorado
Univ of Minnesota 6:05 PM
Minnesota
New York 6:00 PM
Indiana
Phoenix 6:00 PM
Orlando
Cleveland 6:30 PM
Toronto
Utah 6:30 PM
Boston
Charlotte 6:30 PM
Brooklyn
Denver 7:00 PM
Minnesota
Detroit 7:00 PM
New Orleans
LA Lakers 7:00 PM
Miami
Philadelphia 7:00 PM
Oklahoma City
Memphis 7:00 PM
Houston
Sacramento 7:30 PM
San Antonio
Milwaukee 9:30 PM
Golden State
Portland 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
Ottawa 6:30 PM
Winnipeg
NY Rangers 7:00 PM
Detroit
Pittsburgh 9:00 PM
Colorado
Montreal 9:00 PM
Anaheim
Longwood 11:00 AM
Presbyterian
Campbell 1:00 PM
Gardner-Webb
Liberty 5:00 PM
UNC-Asheville
Ohio State 5:00 PM
Penn State
Maine 6:00 PM
Albany
Duquesne 6:00 PM
Fordham
George Washington 6:00 PM
George Mason
Tennessee 6:00 PM
LSU
Notre Dame 6:00 PM
Louisville
SE Missouri St 6:00 PM
Morehead State
St Francis-PA 6:00 PM
Mount St Marys
Hartford 6:00 PM
New Hampshire
Wagner 6:00 PM
Robert Morris
Long Island 6:00 PM
St Francis-NY
La Salle 6:00 PM
Saint Josephs
Providence 6:00 PM
Seton Hall
UCF 6:00 PM
South Florida
Binghamton 6:00 PM
Stony Brook
UMBC 6:00 PM
Vermont
Sacred Heart 6:00 PM
Bryant
Richmond 6:30 PM
Massachusetts
Wake Forest 7:00 PM
Duke
Purdue 7:00 PM
Michigan State
Miami-Florida 7:00 PM
Pittsburgh
St Bonaventure 7:00 PM
Saint Louis
New Mexico St 7:00 PM
TX-Pan American
Houston 7:00 PM
Tulane
Howard 7:00 PM
NJIT
SIU Edwardsville 8:00 PM
Eastern Ill
St Johns 8:00 PM
Marquette
TCU 8:00 PM
Oklahoma State
Cincinnati 8:00 PM
Tulsa
USC 8:00 PM
UCLA
Miss State 8:00 PM
Vanderbilt
Utah State 8:00 PM
Wyoming
Air Force 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Nebraska 9:00 PM
Illinois
Colorado State 9:00 PM
Nevada
Boise State 9:00 PM
San Jose St
San Diego St 10:00 PM
UNLV
Oregon 10:00 PM
Oregon State
UC Santa Barbara 10:59 PM
Hawaii
Toledo 11:00 AM
Northern Ill
Wake Forest 12:00 PM
Boston College
Eastern Illinois 12:00 PM
UT Martin
Austin Peay 2:00 PM
SIU-Edwardsville
Virginia Tech 2:30 PM
NC State
Massachusetts 3:30 PM
St Bonaventure
Auburn 4:00 PM
Florida
Penn State 5:00 PM
Indiana
Clemson 5:30 PM
Georgia Tech
Davidson 6:00 PM
La Salle
Youngstown St 6:00 PM
Cleveland State
Coll of Charleston 6:00 PM
James Madison
Delaware 6:00 PM
Elon
Drexel 6:00 PM
Northeastern
Hofstra 6:00 PM
UNC-Wilmington
Towson 6:00 PM
William & Mary
Miami-Ohio 6:00 PM
Akron
Ball State 6:00 PM
Central Michigan
Buffalo 6:00 PM
Bowling Green
Western Mich 6:00 PM
Eastern Michigan
Ohio U 6:00 PM
Kent State
Illinois-Chicago 6:00 PM
Wright State
Loyola-Maryland 6:00 PM
Lafayette
Boston U 6:00 PM
Colgate
Alabama 6:25 PM
Vanderbilt
Detroit 7:00 PM
Milwaukee
Purdue 7:25 PM
Wisconsin
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who is doing the best job coaching a Minnesota pro sports team?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close