Buckle up, Geno Smith.
It’s time to shine for the almost savior of October 7, 2021 - what will either become known as the day Russell Wilson got hurt that one time or the day the Seattle Seahawks ended.
Geno Smith came out with a 98-frickin yard touchdown drive like a man who’s waited five years to get back at somebody for punching him in the mouth.
After that, things weren’t as easy. For all those who were tempted to start an immediate quarterback controversy, every player in the NFL from practice squad on up is capable of making plays, that’s why they’re here.
Sustaining it is what makes the millionaires.
But Smith is a top of the second round draft pick, and has actually done a couple of
cool things in his career. Since the next 20-something days on this website shall be filled with apocalyptic doom and gloom, I invite you to journey with me down a (brief) road of encouragement.
There is light.
Because, friends, these are Geno Smith’s four best games of his career. By passer rating.
By the way, he won them all.
Introducing the four best games of Geno Smith’s career
4. 2018, Week 6. Los Angeles Chargers vs Cleveland Browns.
Stats: 1 pass, 1 completion, 8 yards. No sacks. An exact 100 passer rating.
No, this is not a troll article. But when you pull up Smith’s stats and filter by passer rating, this is indeed the fourth game that comes up and I laughed my butt off.
We’ll drop down a spot on the list and grab Smith’s three best games as a starter.
Introducing the three best games of Geno Smith’s career as a starter
3. 2014, Week 1. New York Jets vs Oakland Raiders.
Stats: 23 of 28 for 221 yards. 1 TD, 1 INT. 2 sacks, and 38 yards rushing. He also fumbled the ball twice, and lost one of them. Rating: 96.6.
The Raiders that year were very bad (3-13). But hey, so were the Jets (4-12). I’m not putting as much research into this game, because the next two are more interesting. But I will say that Smith’s lone interception this game was a ridiculous play by Hall of Fame DB Charles Woodson. Sometimes the greats do great things.
Here, however, is the first play of the game. Play action - not really sold well - followed by a slight shift left in the pocket, and a deep strike. Interestingly, I’m not sure he’s even got a second look, and kind of stares the first target all the way until the completion of the play. Won’t work against Jalen Ramsey, who by the way is not on the Jacksonville Jaguars.
2. 2013, Week 5. New York Jets vs Atlanta Falcons.
Stats: 16/20 for 199 yards. 3 TDs, 0 INTs. 4 sacks. Three rushing attempts for 21 yards. Rating: 147.7.
This Monday Night game had some insane nonsense happening everywhere. An early drive had a blocked punt turn into a left-handed completed pass for nearly a first down, Jeff Cumberland caught a pass twice on the same play, and Julio Jones picked up somebody else’s fumble for like a 40 yard gain.
But oooooooh baby is it too much to ask for just one of these 3rd and long completions?
You mean to tell me, that a 3rd and 11 is....possible?? pic.twitter.com/ZTXZuKkAkX— Tyler Alsin (@TylerjAlsin) October 9, 2021
1. 2014, Week 17. New York Jets vs Miami Dolphins.
Stats: 20/25 for 358 yards. 3 TDs, 0 INTs. 1 sack for 6 yards. One fumble lost and, well, a receiving target (incomplete). Rating? A perfect 158.3, and he didn’t even have Tyler Lockett.
This game was the real deal. The complete package. Our boy Smith was throwing, if not lasers, sharply-delivered and well-timed packages all over the field. Especially check out the way that Smith makes high-value throws with a quick release.
Ladies and Gentlemen, the intermediate future of your Seattle Seahawks: pic.twitter.com/AHiM1WNk0z— Tyler once again is fire KNJ (@TylerjAlsin) October 9, 2021
This one I particularly like because it's something Russ simply will not do. 3rd down, pressure coming, immediate on time throw to a tight end in the middle of the field, huge gain pic.twitter.com/ILjwwQCVSx— Tyler Alsin (@TylerjAlsin) October 9, 2021
Russell Wilson has 78 career games with a passer rating over 100.0, Geno Smith has three.
However, three trends in his best games that I think both define who he is as a QB and show what the Seahawks might get in Smith for a 3-4 game span. I refuse to consider past that.
First, he’s a fumbler, and that sucks. That’s absolutely not what this team needs right now for 11 reasons, all of them on defense, and an offense with very little margin for error. I don’t know if you’d call him an interception machine, he averages just under one a game, but compared to Wilson anyone is going to look like a careless gunslinger so that will be a fan perception sort of thing, I think.
Second, completion percentage. This is very exciting. In the games we looked at, he had 80, 80, and 82.14% completions. In Russell Wilson’s 10 best games by passer rating, he only had over 80% completion in two of them. Geno’s had some pretty bad games on a small sample size that has brought his career numbers down, but I’m intrigued by this coupled with what we saw on Thursday Night. One of the bigger concerns this year has been how little the offense has sustained drives, and honestly if Smith takes some dunkers to DK Metcalf and Will Dissly, some interesting things are going to happen eventually.
Finally. Finally. Quick release stuff. This is not to say Russell Wilson can’t do it. But in 2021 and a whole bunch of other times, Russell Wilson will not do it. I don’t know why. You don’t know why. Maybe nobody but Ciara knows why.
Russell, please throw the ball man. I believe in you. pic.twitter.com/UWtTouQacZ— King Cope (@cmikesspinmove) September 22, 2021
What I’ve seen in Smith at times is an ability, and perhaps a necessity, to get rid of the ball quicker. Nobody else can do the 8.5-seconds-of-scramble-time-to-find-Lockett thing, so they don’t try. This alone may set Smith apart from Wilson initially in fan perception. If he fires off two, three, four, quality 7-yard completions without getting sacked, somebody’s gonna pop online with “oh THIS is the Waldron offense we expected.” And they’re not entirely wrong, but they’re definitely not right. I think Wilson refuses to do this part of what the Shane Waldron offense intends, and Smith will probably do it better - absolutely especially in the middle of the field. But Smith can’t do the rest of it.
Still, I wonder if that’s enough to beat a couple of cellar-dwellers and see where this team is in a month.
Man, what a year.