We need to constantly think of new ways to introduce articles about Russell Wilson, because he's constantly worth writing about. Though most quarterbacks usually are the focal point (but I can't imagine having to write posts like "So You Think You Can Jump: The Tarvaris Jackson Story"), Wilson is a special breed. A unique player that doesn't only seem set to break every record in franchise history, but has already penned his name at the top of some NFL annals as well.
Wilson, for all
intense intents and purposes, could be well on his way to becoming the most significant player in franchise history. By quarterbacking this team to it's first Super Bowl championship, he may already be that. The secondary deserves as much credit as it receives, but we also somehow overlook the fact that in the NFC Championship game against the San Francisco 49ers, Wilson was 16-of-25 for 215 yards, one touchdown and no interceptions.
Those numbers are good out of context, but in context they're stupendous. Because in Wilson's four previous games against the 49ers, he had never not thrown an interception. Yes, that's correct. Wilson had thrown one pick in each of his previous four games against San Francisco, and held a 2-2 record. In the most important game of his life, against one of the toughest defenses in the NFL, Wilson avoided throwing a pick eventhoughhefumbledonthefirstplayofthegamehahawhatletsmoveon! and later threw the game-winning touchdown pass to Jermaine Kearse on a pass that could only land in one spot and be successful and he nailed it.
In a display that would make even William Wallace proud, the defense held San Francisco down for the rest of the quarter, and the Seahawks were going to the Super Bowl. It was their 17th home win under Wilson in 18 tries.
I already noted earlier in the week that "QB Wins" are a bad stat for measuring the effectiveness and quality of a stat, but that does not mean that bad quarterbacks win very often or that good quarterbacks lose very often. It is the most important position on any team, and that is as true as anything you can say about professional football. When the 2002 Buccaneers or the 2000 Ravens won the Super Bowl, the quarterback position was still the most important position on those teams. But two things should still be noted:
- When Tampa won the Super Bowl, Brad Johnson threw 22 touchdowns and six interceptions and was named to the Pro Bowl. Trent Dilfer was not good, but that brings us to the second point.
- The 2000 Ravens had to have not a great defense, but a historic defense to win the Super Bowl. Baltimore often held opponents under 10 points. It's not unlike Felix Hernandez pitching for the Mariners and knowing that even a shutout might only get him a 0-0 tie. The 2002 Bucs weren't much different.
For Wilson, we know that he has a great defense. Probably a historic defense with that secondary. But if he wasn't so good at doing what he does, especially as a player in his first two seasons that shows experience and maturity well beyond his years, Seattle would not be in this position. I could probably make an argument that Jackson may have done just enough -- a "Dilfering" if you will -- to get the Seahawks their first championship. But Wilson is the guy that puts them over the top and provides reason to believe that unlike the Ravens after 2000 or the Bucs after 2002, the Seahawks will likely contend year after year for awhile.
Here are some more things you may or may not know about Russell Wilson's first two seasons:
- His 15-1 regular season home record through two seasons is the best in NFL history by two wins. Marc Bulger was 13-0 through his first two seasons. Matt Ryan was 13-1 and Andrew Luck was 13-3. If you count 2000 as Kurt Warner's second season (when he was 29-years-old) then he was 13-0 at home as well.
- Wilson has completed 64.35% of his passes at home, tied with Bulger for the fifth-best mark in NFL history behind Warner, Jay Cutler, Daunte Culpepper, and Tom Brady*.
*Warner and Brady suck on so many levels. They have "unofficial rookie seasons" in which they game in for a snap or some bullshit and so it throws off their numbers. However, it's worth noting that Warner missed a significant portion of 2000 and Brady wasn't great in 2002. So, Wilson's still better.
- Luck holds the record for most home passing yards through two seasons, with 4,116. Wilson is 14th with 3,142, which is five yards fewer than Robert Griffin III.
But Wilson has 17 more touchdown passes than Griffin at home, and seven more than Luck.
- Wilson's 31 home touchdown passes through two seasons is second all-time, one fewer than Dan Marino. That being said, Marino played in four fewer games through his first two years. If you count 2000, then Warner had 35 touchdowns and 11 interceptions at home.
- Wilsons 112.8 passer rating at home through two years is the second-best of all-time after Warner. Better than Marino's 103.3.
- Wilson's 8.75 Y/A is fourth-best after Warner, Culpepper, and Ben Roethlisberger.
- Wilson's 9.60 AY/A is second-best after Warner.
- Of Wilson's 52 touchdown passes in the regular season, 12 have gone to Golden Tate, the most by any player. Nine have gone to Sidney Rice, eight to Zach Miller, and only seven to Doug Baldwin.
- Six of his last nine touchdown passes have come in the fourth quarter, including playoffs. Overall, he has 18 touchdown passes in the fourth quarter or overtime in his career, compared to 19 in the second quarter. He has just nine in the first quarter and 12 in the third quarter, meaning he might prefer to get a little warmed up before he does his thing.
- 10 of his 52 touchdown passes went 30 or more yards, 16 were 20 or more, and 33 were 10 or more.
Using the Golden Boy "Andrew Luck" (implying that he's definitely the golden boy, but Andrew Luck is possibly a fake name) as a benchmark for measuring success through two seasons, Luck has 12 of 46 touchdown passes as 30 or more yards, 17 as 20 or more, and 28 as 10 or more.
Wilson has seven touchdown passes on a Monday, compared to zero for Luck. Silly Luck, Monday Night Football is for men.
- Against the AFC, Wilson has a passer rating of 106.5 in eight games. Against the NFC, Luck has a passer rating of 75.3 in eight games.
Against the NFC, Wilson has a passer rating of 98.6 in 24 games. Against the AFC, Luck has a passer rating of 83.8 in 24 games.
Not picking on Luck, but it's just a really convenient thing to have "the next Peyton Manning" as a benchmark for your own young quarterback that was drafted in the same year and both have started an equal number of regular season games. (Not so much postseason games, amirite?)
- Wilson's 102.0 postseason passer rating is the most for any QB in his first two years with at least 75 pass attempts. (Lots of caveats there, but fuck it.)
- There's pretty much nowhere to go but down from here, but Wilson's 125.9 passer rating in November is the best of all-time for any player with at least 100 pass attempts in November. Nick Foles is second at 105.7. For players with a significant amount of playing time, Tony Romo has a passer rating of 105.5 on 971 attempts.
So there's still a ways down Wilson has to fall before getting there.
- On Monday Night Football, Wilson has a 121.6 in three games and is 3-0. He has seven touchdowns and no interceptions. Colin Kaepernick has a rating of 126.8 with six touchdowns and no interceptions. Cam Newton has a rating of 125.2 with six touchdowns and no interceptions.
The best of all-time is Steve Young with a 104.0 passer rating in 25 games with a 19-6 record, 42 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions. So, something to shoot for.
Overall there are a lot of great stats to play with and figure out that make the Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson look pretty damn good. Not that he doesn't do that himself with his rugged newly-single looks and an over-sized beige turtleneck sweater. Maybe some of the stats are skewed to make him look better (not unlike an over-sized beige turtleneck sweater) and maybe some of them aren't that important if you aren't looking at them with biased, hey-we-got-a-championship eyes like I am, but nobody can ever take away from him that when Wilson plays in front of the 12s, he's as good as any young quarterback in NFL history.
We have to keep coming up with new ways to end articles about Russell Wilson, because they're coming early and often. Which when talking about Wilson, is entirely appropriate.