Willes: Bloodied, battered, the Seahawks still draw hope from Russell Wilson

 

 
 
 
 
Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks takes off with the football during the first half of last week's game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.
 
 

Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks takes off with the football during the first half of last week's game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.

Photograph by: Logan Bowles, The Province

Russell Wilson, who makes Anthony Robbins look like Eeyore the donkey, was feeling it this week as the Seattle Seahawks prepared for their crucial meeting with the Los Angeles Rams.

During his press availability, the Seahawks quarterback was asked about the the improvement of his offence this season.

“It’s been impressive just to see how for we have far we have grown since the last time we played (the Rams),” Wilson began. “I think we have so many explosive players.”

Apparently so. Wilson then launched into a lengthy dissertation which extolled the virtues of 11 of his offensive teammates starting with tight end Jimmy Graham before winding his way through all five members of his, err, ‘explosive’ O-line.

“I think the evolution of our offence has been really, really exciting,” he concluded.

OK.

He was also asked about his receiving corps and how he weighs the risk-reward factor when he takes shots down the field. Against Jacksonville last week, Wilson served up three interceptions in search of a big play but he doesn’t see any risk involved in those plays, not with his group of receivers.

“I think we have great confidence in the guys we have,” he said, before running inventory on those guys, naming six of his receivers including back-up tight end Luke Willson and Tanner McEvoy, who’s caught four passes this season.

“They’re going to make the play, I believe, 10 times out of 10,” he said.

You have to admit, those are pretty good odds.

And so it goes for the relentlessly upbeat Wilson. Everything in his world is either exciting or great. Everything he has he owes to his teammates and, of course, the big play-caller in the sky. Last Sunday, after a 30-24 loss to the Jaguars which ended with an ugly melee, he greeted the media with a cheery: “The great thing is that we are fighting for first place (against the Rams).”

For better or worse, this is who he is. Well, that and, maybe, the MVP of the NFL.

“I think we are kind of use to how Russell speaks,” receiver Doug Baldwin when asked about Wilson’s post-game comments in Jacksonville.

“What he is trying to relay there is that we haven’t lost anything. Everything is still right in front of us. We still have an opportunity to play for first place this week so don’t get too negative.

“It’s just the mindset of we are not going to give up.”

And it starts with Wilson.

The Seahawks, of course, have taken any number of gut-punches this season on their way to Sunday’s showdown with the Rams but they still have a shot at first place in the NFC West largely because Wilson has put this team on his back. The numbers are one thing, and they are impressive — 29 touchdown passes, the second-highest total in the league; a team-leading 482 rushing yards, second to only Cam Newton among quarterbacks; an NFL record 17 touchdown passes in the fourth quarter — but they still don’t capture the totality of Wilson’s season or his impact on his team.

The Seahawks lost starting left tackle George Fant in the preseason, went through four running backs before settling on Mike Davis, have lost three more All-Pros on defence in Richard Sherman, Cliff Avril and Kam Chancellor and might be without two more in injured linebackers Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright against the Rams. Yet they’re still slight favourites on Sunday, largely because of Wilson.

“I think when you look at the way (Wilson) is playing, he’s as important as any player to his team,” said Sean McVay, the Rams’ boy wonder coach.

“You’re talking about a great competitor who can stay in the pocket, then create off schedule with his legs. There is nothing that Russell Wilson can’t do.”

That includes creating a belief in the Seahawks. Against the Jags, Wilson was in the middle of his roughest outing of the season when he changed into Superman in the fourth quarter, throwing for 149 yards and two touchdowns. The Seahawks comeback was thwarted, in part because the officials missed an obvious defensive holding call on a fourth-down gamble. But, even in a game where he threw three interceptions, Wilson’s aura remained intact.

Heading into a contest which means so much to this franchise, that aura remains the Seahawks best chance against the Rams.

“I don’t know if there can be a better situation for us,” Wilson said.

And this he believes, just as his team and city believes in him.

ewilles@postmedia.com

twitter.com/willesonsports

 
 
 
Font:
 
 
 
 
Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks takes off with the football during the first half of last week's game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.
 

Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks takes off with the football during the first half of last week's game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.

Photograph by: Logan Bowles, The Province

 
Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks takes off with the football during the first half of last week's game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Fla.
Players, including quarterback Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks and quarterback Carson Wentz of the Philadelphia Eagles, gather in a circle for a postgame prayer at CenturyLink Field earlier this month in Seattle.
 
 
 
 
 
 
We encourage all readers to share their views on our articles and blog posts. We are committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion, so we ask you to avoid personal attacks, and please keep your comments relevant and respectful. If you encounter a comment that is abusive, click the "X" in the upper right corner of the comment box to report spam or abuse. We are using Facebook commenting. Visit our FAQ page for more information.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Your voice