Russell Wilson embracing the process

Posted Oct 25, 2012

Not surprisingly, the diverse performances of the Seahawks’ offense at home and on the road have been mirrored by the play of Russell Wilson, their still-developing, but still-confident rookie quarterback.

In the Seahawks’ four victories, Russell Wilson has been very, very good. In their three losses, the rookie quarterback hasn’t been quite as good.

But you can stop the scavenger hunt to come up with the reason for the disparity – in his performance, as well as that of his team – as the Seahawks prepare for Sunday’s game against the Lions in Detroit.

“There’s no need to go searching for an exact answer, that is the answer,” Wilson said Thursday. “It’s making the plays when we need to make them.”

Just as Wilson has done in the Seahawks’ four victories, three of them at CenturyLink Field. In the wins over the Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers and New England Patriots at home, as well as the win against the Panthers in Carolina, Wilson threw seven touchdown passes and two interceptions. In addition, he also completed 65 percent of his passes (60 for 93) for 795 yards and a passer rating of 107.6.

In the three road losses, to each of the other three teams in the NFC West, his numbers don’t stack up nearly as well: 51 percent completions (42 of 82) for 435 yards, with one TD pass and five interceptions, for a rating of 45.5.

No wonder coach Pete Carroll has spent the week preaching that the Seahawks need to find a way to take their home game on the road. And he gets only an Amen from his rookie QB.

“The biggest difference is, we’ve just got to play a little bit better – whatever it is,” Wilson said. “We’ve lost some very close games on the road. So we just need to finish those games. That’s what it really comes down to. So it’s just focusing on executing and finishing, especially in the second half and third quarters and the fourth quarters.

“We’ve got to just make the plays when we need them.”

Wilson has become the lightning rod for everything that happens to the Seahawks’ offense, whether it’s fair or not, because of the position he plays and the position he has been put in.

“The biggest thing is his win-loss record,” Lions coach Jim Schwartz said Wednesday when asked about Wilson during a conference-call interview. “He’s gotten four wins, and even their losses have been close. He’s hung in there and has made plays, particularly at the end of games to give them those wins.

“That’s a sign of a good quarterback.”

It’s seems impossible to discuss Wilson without getting into his height, even when the opinion being expressed is long distance. But from what Schwartz has seen Wilson is measuring up just fine.

“He’s very mobile. He makes a lot of plays with his feet and he can extend plays,” Schwartz said. “He’s not the tallest guy, but neither was Fran Tarkenton and neither was Doug Flutie. I think there are some similarities in those guys.

“He has a great arm, just like those guys had – particularly Flutie – and he does a good job of throwing on the move. He’s one of the best over-the-top throwers that we’ve faced. He has a really live arm and has made a lot of plays down the field.”

The whole thing is a process, and Wilson understands that there will be lows to go with the highs as he wades through his first season. He just experienced the most productive game of his rookie season (three TD passes and 293 yards against the Patriots) and the least productive (9 of 23 for 122 yards against the 49ers) in a five-day span.

“I definitely think I’m way further ahead than I was when I first started,” he said. “But that’s the process and you respect the process. You gain as much knowledge as you can. You keep growing. You keep trying to help the team the best way possible. And you keep trying to perform at a high level.”