Russell Wilson seems to have taken his team’s defensive struggles upon himself. At least, it would certainly explain some of the decision making the past few weeks.
The Seattle Seahawks just scored 34 points on Wilson’s 28 completions for 390 yards and two touchdowns. Wilson added a rare QB sneak for another TD. He’s not broken; he’s not bad.
But he’s been more head-scratching than normal, and it comes behind what’s looked to be one of the best offensive lines he’s ever had. His deep ball is the best it’s ever been, and the foolish ease with which he has made numerous difficult throws has been on display all season.
Then, he’s done the stuff that potentially cost Seattle the game on Sunday. Russell Wilson threw two picks and lost two fumbles en route to one of his worst turnover games of his career, and at bad times, and in the wrong places on the field.
Wilson has only lost two fumbles two other times in his career. Once in 2015, and once in 2013. In each of those games, he threw no interceptions. This then, was the only such game in Wilson’s career with two of each.
After eight games, Wilson has more interceptions than either of his previous two full seasons. At 2.7% this is the highest interception rate since his rookie season.
Twice in three games, Wilson has thrown an interception in the end zone:
JORDAN. POYER.— Buffalo Bills (@BuffaloBills) November 8, 2020
#SEAvsBUF on FOX pic.twitter.com/jkwN3QSZ8L
While apparently forgetting that guys actually can catch him from behind:
FUMBLE. And the @buffalobills recover!— NFL (@NFL) November 8, 2020
: #SEAvsBUF on FOX
: NFL app // Yahoo Sports app: https://t.co/MXkgo0fhcN pic.twitter.com/dhpfnM9QCq
It’s been the kind of mistakes that are so very unfamiliar to Russell Wilson’s game, while proving that this team is in no way good enough to win when Wilson is bad. Fortunately for the Seahawks, he’s not bad very often.
But Seattle’s only played two good teams and they lost both times.
Obviously the scenario in Buffalo was entirely different, but notice the similarities in the throws from Wilson’s end zone interception against the Arizona Cardinals:
Come for the Budda Baker interception, stay for DK Metcalf CHASING. HIM. DOWN. #SEAvsAZ | NBC pic.twitter.com/eeth0yseX6— Sunday Night Football (@SNFonNBC) October 26, 2020
Yes one was under pressure and one was not, but soft throws to the right corner of the end zone, neither of them being accuracy issues in the slightest. They’re bad decision-making, as if the only thing he needs to do is throw the ball at his receiver. In both cases the defender had already made hard movement towards the spot and Wilson threw it casually anyway.
It’s possible none of this would have mattered, because had the Seahawks scored more and quickly we could have seen 50 or more points out of Buffalo with ease. But the rest of Wilson’s play is clear indication he hasn’t suddenly become terrible. For crying out loud look at the picture attached to this piece; he’s made insane throws this season as per usual.
Where these blunders come from then is worrying, if he’s putting too much pressure on himself or is simply taking plays off from reading the defense.
Before anyone attributes this to the Let Russ Cook movement, he’s on pace for 594 passing attempts this year. That is certainly a lot, but it’s not astronomically more than 546 in 2016 or 553 in 2017. This is not a necessary evil of volume passing; this is something different.
Please, before 2020 takes us all, give the man some defensive stops and see what happens. I bet it would be good.