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Morning Links: How much better can Wilson be?

Post by Todd Dybas / The News Tribune on April 1, 2014 at 11:24 am with 23 Comments »
April 1, 2014 11:32 am

Good morning.

The question in the headline is open-ended, but Pete Carroll told Peter King of MMQB that Wilson can be much better and thinks Wilson can complete 70 percent of his passes:

“He needs all the attention that everyone else needs, and he’s gonna get it,” Carroll said. “Russell’s just a young guy figuring it out. Of course, he applies himself so well that you think that he’s okay. I think that would be a tragic mistake. He’s just developing. He’s just coming on. He needs work fundamentally. He needs work on the principles of what we’re doing. He needs repetitions with the guys he plays with. All of that will just continue to add to his play. So we’re not going to treat him any differently than anybody else. We’re gonna battle like crazy to make him push his game as far as he can take it. So that’s what this offseason is about. He’ll be available as much as a guy can be available. He’s already traveling with our guys. Throwing with our guys. Working out with guys all over the country. He’s ringing the bell now. Wherever he goes, they know he’s coming. He’s gonna get them out and get them on a field somewhere, and throw the ball around, and do something with the fellas.’’

Wilson completed 64.1 percent of his passes his rookie season. That dropped to 63.1 percent last season.

If Wilson completed 70 percent of his passes — as Carroll suggested he can — he would have led the league in completion percentage last year.

2013-14 completion percentage leaders:

1. Phillip Rivers 69.5

2. Drew Brees 68.6

3. Peyton Manning 68.3

4. Matt Ryan 67.4

5. Aaron Rodgers 66.6

Wilson tied Chicago’s Jay Cutler for 12th.

In regard to last year, there were several mitigating factors for Wilson: injuries to the offensive line caused that group to struggle for a stretch of the season, and injuries to wide receivers Percy Harvin and Sidney Rice rearranged the receiving corps the Seahawks expected to have.

Regardless, 70 percent is a hefty number. Joe Montana hit it once (70.2 percent, 1989) in 15 seasons. Dan Marino never hit it. Peyton Manning has never hit it. Drew Brees has done it twice, 70.6 percent in 2009 and 71.2 percent in 2011, the latter of which is the NFL record.

Again, there is more to it than just the quarterback. But 70 percent is a Hall of Fame figure.

For now, Wilson will be pulling on a baseball jersey again. He’ll throw out the first pitch for the Texas Rangers on Wednesday.

Links:

> The Baltimore Sun says the Seahawks have a private workout setup with Indiana wide receiver Cody Latimer. Latimer is 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds. He entered the draft following his junior season, during which he had 77 catches for 1,096 yards and nine touchdowns. He had at least two catches in every games last season. Two was his low-mark because he and the other starters came out very early in the opener, a 73-35 blasting of Indiana State. He has 4.4 speed.

> According to NBC4 Washington, the 49ers have interest in DeSean Jackson.

> Members of the Seahawks, including Malcolm Smith and Jermaine Kearse, visited the Darrington community, which has been greatly affected by the recent mudslide.

> On April 1, Donald Trump says he has been approached about buying the Buffalo Bills. Considering the date and the source, take that as you will.

> On April Fool’s Day, a look at the best trick plays in NFL history. The first one is something Carroll has been trying to forget for 20 years.

Leave a comment Comments → 23
  1. yankinta says:

    Considering he played behind O-Line that ranked 32nd (Dead Last) in Pass Protection,, and that he played against Top 7 Defenses on a regualar basis,,, I’d say, he played like a Top 3 QB in the League….

    He can and will get better though,, that’s the scary part. He will be a Legitimate MVP candidate this year,, but still an uphill battle since he won’t get the Opp to put up the Stats…

  2. freedom_X says:

    There were times last year (especially leading up to the playoffs) where Wilson’s accuracy dipped. He wasn’t connecting on throws we were accustomed to seeing him make, and it wasn’t because of duress (I’m ignoring the missed throws due to pressure.)

    It seemed like Wilson regressed in the last third of the season. Perhaps poor protection got him into bad habits. Even with good protection he wasn’t as accurate. He seemed to get most of it back by playoff times fortunately, but Wilson didn’t recapture the tremendous throwing form he showed late in the 2012 season and playoffs.

    Since Seattle’s redzone production is pedestrian, there’s no question there’s room for improvement with Wilson. Especially as the team ages – it’s likely the team will transition from massive defensive emphasis to more offensive emphasis.

    This happens to almost all defensively oriented teams with a good QB. As the defense ages and becomes higher priced, then it becomes cheaper to balance defensive losses with increased offensive production, which should be possible if the team has a good QB.

  3. ChrisHolmes says:

    There’s no question Wilson can get better, and he has the work ethic to do it. But I think 70% might be out of range due, not to Wilson, but the offense they run. We take deep shots off play-action, and that will always drag percentage down.

    I think the overthrows and some of the other misses are certain correctable from Wilson though. I expect him to get better.

  4. jawpeace says:

    If Wilson never progressed beyond what he is today, I would still be happy with who the Hawks have at QB. With that said, I don’t think that is possible with his work ethic. Wilson is going to get better! The Hawks have a franchise QB. And in my opinion the best QB in franchise history is playing now.

  5. CDHawkFan says:

    I was a bit surprised we didn’t hear about a injury after the SB, as in him playing with an injury during some of the season.

    I found it a little odd in one of the PC/gatorade video’s, that he asked Miller to switch sides.

    I think it was in the opening series vs the 9ers in San Fran when Wilson held on to the ball and got popped by Bowmen or Wills. Seemed like he didn’t see him coming which I didn’t understand as it was right in front of him. That seemed to happen a few times last year.

    Anyway, I am guessing he was playing banged up when he struggled for 6-7 weeks.

  6. RW will get better – I have no doubt.

    One of the things I would like to be improved is how he starts a game – he seems to make poor (or atleast not as good) decisions and is often off target early in games. Running and banging arooud seems to get him past the start of game jitters.

  7. Southendzone says:

    RW took a beating in both the SF game in SF and the playoff game. He was getting pounded by those linebackers.

  8. Singularitarian says:

    with the offensive line troubles and lack of receivers, I would argue he had the best season of any Seahawk qb ever. I also would argue that the saints and broncos got a lot of yards throwing against sub par defenses. You all saw what Peyton and Brees looked like when facing real defenses. if Manning played in the NFC west he’d be called washed up. I would take no other quarterback right now, including Aaron Rodgers

  9. Singularitarian says:

    Aaron Rodgers would have been sacked 80 times behind our line with our receivers and against the caliber of defenses we played

  10. I’ve been nothing but awesomely impressed with Russell’s play but can picture what has been felt as possible ‘regression’ for a little while. Along with all the other very real contributing factors I wonder if a sophomore slump could have struck somewhere in there. Certainly not a big one, and it’d be no surprise for Russell to manage keeping such a thing to a minimum. Don’t know if I’d want any other QB.

  11. This year wilson will have enough passes to qualify for the all time passer rating list. At that point he will be 2nd only behind Aaron Rodgers. This list includes Payton Manning and Tom Brady. I hope wilson keeps improving.

  12. ChrisHolmes says:

    “…if Manning played in the NFC west he’d be called washed up.”

    “Washed Up” would be a stretch, by a long way.

    But he certainly wouldn’t have put up the same numbers.

    There’s no question that the “most prolific offense in NFL history” benefited from some porous defenses last year.

    That said, you can only play the opponents that are put in front of you. And Denver routed just about everyone they played. The scored and scored. You don’t put up those kinds of numbers if you’re not a legit great offense of all time.

    They were great. And we beat them. That makes it even better. #1 vs. #1.

  13. doubledink says:

    Ciggy,
    If a sophomore slump means a Lombardi Trophy, I hope he has a junior slump of the same magnitude.

  14. Doubledink, boy so do I- give me RW’s ‘slump’, if he actually had one, over the majority of qb’s better seasons- especially with most – most – of the supporting cast he’s got. Coaching in particular.

  15. I sure would like to see what kind of QB he could be with some decent and consistent blocking. Would he be as good without the scramble?

  16. Has anyone ever seen Tom Brady or Dan Marino play in person? Each of those guys are unique with respect to their footwork. I have never seen faster/quicker feet in my life with respect to how they navigate the pocket. It’s amazing.

    Until I saw Marino, I’d only ever heard about his quick release (and, yes, it was quick) but when I saw him in person — it was his footwork in the pocket that utterly amazed me and how someone as “slow” as him was able to slide and move his feet better anyone.

    Just because Wilson is a better athlete in terms of running around doesn’t mean he’s any good at standing in the pocket and navigating his way around bodies. In fact, he kind of sucks at it and many of you blame everything on the OL when things go wrong. Sometimes, yes, he has no chance (like that first Rams game this past year that he was able to still win) and it’s all 100% on the line, but there are times when Wilson is simply ineffective at that part of his game.

    Before the blind followers go psycho, I do know for a fact that he’s truly great and I utterly love him and wouldn’t trade him for almost anyone, but the fact of the matter is that Wilson has strengths and weaknesses. If some Seahawk fans can’t realize this, that’s fine, as Wilson himself is smart enough to recognize them (and will work hard to improve).

    Fortunately for us, he has many more strengths than weakness – but he nevertheless has them.

    That doesn’t take away from the fact that non-mobile guys like Brady and Marino would have gotten sacked LESS than Wilson this past season than a great athlete like Wilson was.

    Not every problem in the world was the OL’s fault, although the road to the Super Bowl was gained more in spite of the OL than because of it.

  17. SundayButter says:

    Not sure the “Baltimore Sun link” has anything to do with the Seahawks, other than Bobby Engram used to play for us.

    I think Cody Latimer would a solid later round pick.

  18. Looks like the Seahawks are going to be losing a home game next year (which makes no sense) and will be playing the Rams in England.

    You’d think the NFL would want teams give up home games if they are from a venue that doesn’t sell out. Makes no sense to take a home game away from a team that would have sold the game out and allow a loser team like Jacksonville or Oakland, who can’t sell out, to keep all their home games.

    Maybe this is their creative way to let England think they are the 12th Man and can market the game accordingly? That’s all I can think of.

    Both the Seahawks and Rams will have their byes scheduled for after the game in London though so they will have time to get readjusted (but will suck for their vacation time on bye).

  19. rramstad says:

    BobbyK, do you have a source for that, or is it an April Fools joke?

    I mention this because the Seahawks have already charged season ticket holders for this coming season, and if they think they are going to only give me nine games for what I paid, well, they’ve got a serious problem between me and all the other season ticket holders. The assumption when we paid for a season is that we’d get the same number of home games as always… not 10% downgrade in home games plus 12% increase in cost.

  20. You got me… April Fools joke. That didn’t last long! Darn.

    One thing people can’t play on us is the fact that we were Super Bowl champs on March 31 and we’re gonna be (still) champs on April 2, too!

  21. MikeFromNewJersey says:

    No bueno Bobby!!! You had me too!!

  22. Can you say Russel Wilson boner. If it lasts more than 4 hours, ya better seek medical attention.

  23. CDHawkFan says:

    The 3 games in London for next year were announced about 4 months ago.
    Jac, Det, Dallas, and a few others I could care less about.

    Not enough for me to travel across London.

    Note, all 3 games were sold out within about 2 months.

    I think they (NFL) are pushing their luck with have more than 1 or 2 games here. It took awhile this year to sell out that last game, and who knows what ‘sell out’ means.

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