Hopefully you’re all rested and recovered from this last weekend’s draft. The Seattle Seahawks picked 12 players in all, and of those I think there is one that we should all know. Not Bruce Irvin, who looks like Larry Fitzgerald at the pass rushing end spot. Not Bobby Wagner or Mini-Marshawn Robert Turbin. No, the guy who will shape this team for years to come is Russell Wilson.
Selected in the 3rd round, number 75 overall, quarterback Russell Wilson out of Wisconsin is one player it’s easy to root for. He’s a hard-working, intelligent passer. In interviews he comes across as a bright, well-spoken guy. When Russell Wilson gets on the field he throws beautiful balls. He commands attention on the field and controlled the locker room in two widely different Division 1 programs. Oh, and he’s just a fraction shy of 5 feet, 11 inches tall. It’s easy to get behind an underdog, a guy who has battled for everything he’s earned in athletics and sports.
But rooting for an underdog just because he’s a good story is one thing. Rooting for a guy because he looks the part on the field of play is another. And yet this third reason is why I’m so excited and will be out there rooting for #3 this summer and fall. Using some numbers from TotalFootballStats.com, I want to show the reason I’m so excited; the difference between Russell Wilson and players with similar college numbers. (Examples are made using only each player’s best season for comparison, but the numbers cumulatively tell a similar story.)
- 63.4% completion percentage
- 3983 passing yards
- 39-20 touchdown to interception ratio
- 137.8 passer rating
- 62.8% completion percentage
- 2586 passing yards
- 20-6 touchdown to interception ratio
- 142.3 passer rating
- 72.8% completion percentage
- 3175 passing yards
- 33-4 touchdown to interception ratio
- 191.8 passer rating
- 59.5% completion percentage
- 2876 passing yards
- 37-23 touchdown to interception ratio
- 143.1 passer rating
- 60.2% completion percentage
- 3819 passing yards
- 36-11 touchdown to interception ratio
- 147.7 passer rating
So that was interesting right? Which of these guys would you like on your team? Who would go under center? Going off the numbers alone, you’d think E. Plenty of yardage and a good TD/INT ratio. Well player E is Peyton Manning and had rookie Peyton Manning been available for the price of the #75 pick overall I can’t imagine a lot of people would pass. Russell Wilson is easily and frequently compared to A. Similar size, but a guy who has been one of the most effective quarterbacks in football, and this year set the NFL record for passing yardage in a season. So we’ve ruled out Peyton Manning (E) and Drew Brees (A). Dan Marino (D) is one of the best quarterbacks I never got the pleasure to appreciate live, and he looks quite average in the company he has here.
This leaves us with quarterbacks B and C. Quarterback B has won a few Super Bowl championships in his time in the league. But he was drafted late with pick #199 overall. He’s set records for passing in the NFL. Quarterback B is Tom Brady, arguably the best to ever play the position. But look at this excerpt from his pre-draft scouting report (courtesy of NE Patriots website):
Summary: Is not what you’re looking for in terms of physical stature, strength, arm strength and mobility, but he has the intangibles and production and showed great(…) improvement as a senior. Could make it in the right system but will not be for everyone.
Remarkably relevant for the guy we’re talking about in Seattle. Maybe John Schneider and Pete Carroll are wrong. Maybe the pundits are right. But I promise when the camp kicks off this summer and people are enjoying the sun, they’ll also be enjoying seeing one of the hardest working QB prospects with a sky-high ceiling. Will he become the next Tom Brady? I sure hope so, and can’t wait to see.