There’s been more wristband discourse than usual in the world of Seattle Seahawks football.
Current starting quarterback Geno Smith has played at such a high level that he figures to be the favorite to win Comeback Player of the Year, and every meaningful metric you can think of makes him a top-ten quarterback. Under second-year offensive coordinator Shane Waldron, it seems that Smith is realizing his potential that was never fulfilled when he was with the New York Jets.
Now to the fun part: What’s helped Geno succeed? Well Pete Carroll mentioned a couple of notable things earlier in the week: Trust in Waldron, and his handy dandy playcall wristband.
“If you notice, Geno’s going off the wristband, and that’s a big help,” Carroll said (via Seattle Sports 710). “It’s smoothed things out, sped things up, cleaned things up. And that’s part of it, too. We never did that before. There was resistance to that, so we didn’t do that before.”
“When Shane says something to Geno, he’s not doubting it. He’s just going with it, so there’s a real immediate flow and that accelerates all the process,” Carroll said. “… He’s functioning really comfortably regardless of what the circumstances are.”
Now the “there was resistance to that” bit has been construed as a shot at Russell Wilson, who never wore the wristband under Waldron. In fact through intense research of me typing in “Russell Wilson [Year]” in our photo library, the 2012 and 2014 seasons appear to be the only ones in which Wilson ever had a wristband on him. This includes the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots, but it doesn’t mean that he had the playcall wristband every game in those seasons.
Little did we know that Wilson would be asked about this in his pre-game press conference ahead of the Denver Broncos’ road game at the Tennessee Titans.
“I don’t know exactly what he said. We won a lot of games there without one on the wrist,’’ Wilson said.
“I didn’t know winning or losing mattered if you wore a wristband on or not. I think you do what it takes to make sure we’re rolling and moving and everything else. A few times I’ve definitely worn a wristband with the game plan and what we have called.’’
Wilson hadn’t worn the wristband in Denver until the recent win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in London, which is presumably an adjustment made by coach Nathaniel Hackett given the efforts to simplify an offense that has struggled to put up points or get plays off in time.
The “there was some resistance to that” line by Carroll turned what should’ve been a nothing story into a something story, such that Wilson was asked about it by Denver media.
So yeah, Geno’s been performing very well and Russell is correct that the Seahawks won a ton of games and a literal Super Bowl without the wristband.
Wristband Geno is 2022’s Skybox Schottenheimer, except we hope there isn’t a tapering of the magic in the 2nd half of the season.