Robert Griffin III and Andrew Luck garnered most of the hype throughout the season and RG3 was named the NFL’s Rookie of the Year over the weekend, but it’s certainly arguable that the top rookie was a quarterback drafted much later than those two. Russell Wilson put together an unfathomable run in Seattle and it’s fun to listen to him discuss his late-game heroics in this interview.
Russell Wilson joined WSCR in Chicago with McNeil and Spiegel to discuss being drafted after a punter, how he got better as his rookie year went along, the staying power of the zone option read offense in the NFL and crafting a big comeback in his first career playoff game.
Is it crazy now to think that a punter was drafted before you?:
“It’s OK. All I know is I’m in the right spot at the right time and that’s all I care about. … I’m playing for the Seattle Seahawks and my goal is to make the other 31 teams regret it, and I’m just glad I’m playing for Coach Pete Carroll.”
Your play just seemed to get better and better as the year wore on. Why?:
“I think just my teammates helping me out, just in terms of continuing to learn and continuing to ask questions from those guys. And my coaching staff just let it loose for me and just let me play the game and just continue to grow in terms of the playbook and everything.”
What do you think about this debate over whether the zone read scheme has staying power in the NFL?:
“I definitely think it’s here to stay. In terms of the read option, it’s just a changeup for us. We may run 15, maybe 20 percent, of our runs are the read option plays, or whatever. But I’m usually handing it off. I’d rather hand the ball off to Marshawn Lynch … and let him do what he does. Then, if there’s an opportunity to run it, I’m pulling it for a reason. I’m just trying to get a positive gain and make something happen.”
It’s a tough defense to stop, isn’t it?:
“Yeah, it’s tough to stop. I think the thing with us, and why it works so efficient for us, is we love throwing the ball out of the formation. We do a lot of things, a lot of play action, a lot of different looks.”
You orchestrated a great comeback in your first playoff game. How did you manage to keep your mind right after trailing early?:
“I think it’s the way you train your mind throughout the week — like I said, the separation and the preparation. So you prepare your mind for just playing one play at a time — stay in the now. When you look at any great athlete, the guy who can stay in the moment the most is the one that’s going to be the most successful the most often. You guys watched Michael Jordan. He was always in the moment, that guy that was always just focused on the situation. I love to play when the game’s on the line, you’re down, and you’ve got to take your team up and down the field. There’s no better moment than that.”