GREEN BAY, Wis.—The Seahawks' ability to turn a 21-3 halftime deficit into a one-score game late in the fourth quarter was a testament to the grit and resolve this team showed all season.
Also, as Sunday's game showed, having a really good quarterback helps.
The Seahawks fell to the Packers 28-23 in the divisional round playoff game at Lambeau Field, but as disappointing as the result was, Wilson's play served as a good reminder that as long as he's on the team—and he just signed a contract extension in April—the Seahawks will be in almost every game they play.
"I thought Russell was phenomenal tonight," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. "He did everything he could have done, and I just thought his courage and his toughness showed up. His resolve to find ways was all over the field, running and passing, the throws that he made, the runs that he made, the escapes that he pulled off. And just always going to win is what he was doing. It was awesome. It was awesome to watch him be a part of this. I'm really proud of him and the rest of the guys that fought for this."
After completing 6 of 13 attempts for 105 yards in a first half in which the Seahawks were held to a single field goal, Wilson and Seattle's offense caught fire in the second half. After throwing an incomplete pass to open the third quarter, Wilson completed 15 of his final 17 passes—and one of those incompletions was dropped—for 172 yards and a touchdown, while also rushing for 48 yards on five second-half carries. With 64 rushing yards in the game, Wilson led the Seahawks in rushing for the second straight playoff game.
"I can't say enough about him, man," left tackle Duane Brown said. "He's the best. These aren't the kind of games you want to be in out here, where you get down a few touchdowns, a few scores. In this environment against that kind of defense, you become one-dimensional, that's not the kind of game you want to be in. But with him, you always feel like you've got a chance. He's a phenomenal talent, and I'm just glad to be on the same team with him."
With the Seahawks trailing by 18 points at halftime, Wilson's message to the team was, "We're going to win this game." he said. "Unfortunately, we didn't. The belief was that we were going to find a way. That's the thing we have been able to do all year."
That belief Wilson has in himself and the team being able to overcome just about anything is one of his best traits, and one that nearly led to a memorable playoff comeback. It's why no one was surprised when Wilson led touchdown drives of 69, 84 and 79 yards to turn what could have become a blowout into a one-score game in the fourth quarter.
"It's because the mentality that he has," Carroll said. "He always believes—no, he always knows he's going to win. He knows that. And so he can't think anything else, and he can't function in any other way, and that's not just like, oh, sometimes when he has a good feeling or a good day. That ain't how it is. It's forever. It's been like this since the moment he walked in here. I didn't teach him nothing, I didn't coach him on any of that. I'd love to show you—I can't take credit for any of that. This is him, and it goes back to his mom and dad and the way they raised him. The only way he can think is he's going to get it done. He's just going to make it happen. And he's proven it so many times. He did it again."