Will Russell Wilson ever shake the stigma and get the respect that he deserves?

USA TODAY Sports

The NFL Network ranked their players by height this year, apparently.

In high school, Russell Wilson scored 55 touchdowns. As a junior. He threw for 3,287 yards and 40 touchdowns, and ran for 634 yards with 15 touchdowns. As a senior, he threw for 34 touchdowns and ran for 1,132 yards and 18 touchdowns. I've already said 'touchdowns' five times but that's only part of Wilson.

He was the class president, he was in Sports Illustrated, he played basketball and he was drafted to play baseball by the Orioles in 2007 and the Rockies later in 2010, when he'd play 93 minor league games. If you knew Wilson in high school you'd either want to kiss him out of love or kill him out of jealousy that was still underlined with love. What wasn't good about Russell Wilson, the high school quarterback? I'm not talking about height, I'm talking about football. What wasn't good about him?

Enough to only get two stars from Scout and Rival and draw offers from NC State and Duke. Which from a football perspective is like choosing between (a thing that's "okay" and a thing that's bad. I had no analogies to give today. I'm like a guy with no analogies.)

NC State isn't bad, but they're nothing special. During his final year at NC State, they finished ranked in the top 25 for the first time since 2002. During his career, he completed 57.8% of his passes for 8,545 yards, 76 touchdowns, 26 interceptions, and ran for 1,083 yards and 17 more touchdowns. Now he had finally proven himself enough to get a year at Wisconsin, where of course he set the single season record for passing efficiency.

Russell Wilson is really fucking good at football.

This didn't stop him from being a third round pick, and I don't pretend to count myself among the non-skeptical. I doubted that he'd start a game as a rookie, I didn't think that history had given any indication that a 5'10 quarterback could succeed at a high level in the NFL, we laughed away the people that said he'd defy everything.

And then that asshole defied everything.

I don't need to tell you about Wilson's rookie season, it was what Winston Churchill would call "bonerific", and I don't need to tell you that he's short. But we saw what we saw. I'm not going to say that at one point he was the best quarterback in the NFL, but I will say that at one time he might have been the most successful. I give a lot of credit to the coaching staff for that, but it doesn't change the fact that because Wilson can do what he does, the coaches are able to do what they do. And the offense was better than I've ever seen here in Seattle.

So when I happen to be minding my own business and see on the television that the NFL Network has ranked Wilson 51st (fine) and Andrew Luck at 23rd (not fine) I have a motherfucking bone to pick. Not to mention the fact that Robert Griffin III is supposedly in the top 20.

I'm not a guy that gets hung up on meaningless rankings, I don't give seventeen dicks what some panel thinks, but there is some meaning here: That there are still people that are either skeptical of Wilson or honestly just believe that Luck and Griffin have managed to be that much better than him. My only question is "Why?"

I'd like anyone to give me a detailed explanation of what would motivate a person to think that Luck has a significant edge of Wilson at this stage in their careers without mentioning height or draft status.

What do you think? Is the gap between Wilson and the other two QBs in the class of 2012 respectably that wide, should there be a gap at all, and is Wilson third? What are your thoughts on his placement in general? Will Russell Wilson ever be able to escape doubters that simply won't ever put him in the same echelon as a "prototypical" QB like Luck?

Update on the rest:

95. Max Unger

90. Percy Harvin

66. Earl Thomas

51. Russell Wilson

50. Richard Sherman

24. Marshawn Lynch

The Seahawks did not have any players on this list in 2011. Lynch was 94th in 2012, Thomas was 66th.

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