Focus on: Russell Wilson

Posted Sep 25, 2013

Russell Wilson’s “will to succeed” stood out when he met with Houston Texans coach Gary Kubiak at the NFL Scouting Combine last year. Now the Seahawks’ quarterback is looking for success against the Texans on Sunday.

It would be easy to focus on Russell Wilson every day.

The Seahawks’ second-year quarterback is coming off a four-touchdown pass performance, and Wilson played only three series into the third quarter before giving way to backup Tarvaris Jackson in Sunday’s 45-17 rout of the Jacksonville Jaguars. Wilson’s 14-of-21, 202-yard, four-TD performance only increased his league-best passer rating since Week 9 of his rookie season to 117.3.

The quarterbacks who are trailing Wilson? The Denver Broncos’ Peyton Manning (111.9), Green Bay Packers’ Aaron Rodgers (107.2) and Dallas Cowboys’ Tony Romo (100.5). So Wilson doesn’t just find himself in good company, he finds himself performing more efficiently than any QB in the league over the past 11 regular-season games.

But Wednesday offered an opportunity to focus on Wilson through the eyes of Gary Kubiak, the former NFL quarterback and quarterbacks coach who is now in his seventh season as head coach of the Houston Texans – the team that hosts the Seahawks and Wilson this Sunday at Reliant Stadium.

“Yeah, boy he is impressive,” Kubiak said during a conference-call interview when asked for his impressions of Wilson. “I just think they’re doing a tremendous job there, scheme-wise, with him. They’re running the ball so well and obviously booting a bunch off of the runs and finding ways to make big plays and use his athletic ability.”

Kubiak also was impressed with Wilson during an interview at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, two months before the Seahawks selected Wilson in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft.

“He was a very impressive young man coming out,” Kubiak said. “I remembering visiting with him at Indianapolis. And just his will to succeed. That’s what you’ve seen in the league, and just very impressive.”

Before coming to the Texans, Kubiak played for the Denver Broncos (1983-91) and then coached at his alma mater, Texas A&M (1992-93); with the San Francisco 49ers (1994); and Broncos (1995-2005).

Kubiak didn’t get a lot of opportunities to play the position in the NFL, because he was the Broncos’ eighth-round draft choice in 1983 – the same draft that delivered Hall of Fame QB John Elway in the first round. Kubiak started only five games in nine seasons, but one game against the Seahawks in 1983 at Mile High Stadium. Kubiak stepped in for an ill Elway and completed 10 of 18 passes for 165 yards and a touchdown and also ran for a score in the Broncos’ 38-27 victory.