Jan 13, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) runs the ball in the fourth quarter of the NFC divisional playoff game against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons won 30-28. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Defining Expectations For 2013: Russell Wilson

The Seahawks enter the 2013 season in a position that haven’t been in since the 2008 season: one with absolutely no questions regarding their starting quarterback.

If funny how different things are now from a year ago. Matt Flynn was the presumed starter, and there wer serious worries that Tarvaris Jackson would manage to outplay Flynn in training camp and hold on to the starting job. Russell Wilson, a third round pick, was an afterthought in terms of being a possible starter in 2012.

Wilson wasn’t to be denied though. He fought and won the job in training camp, and never looked back. After his slow start to the season, Wilson just kept getting better. He ended the season with stats that ranked him among the the very best in the NFL.

Despite my initial reaction to the draft selection of Wilson, (I’ve already eaten enough crow for that article that I’m working on a “to serve crow” cookbook) you’re not going to find a bigger fan of Wilson than me. I’m a true convert, and I’m simply not going to tollerate those who ignorantly hate on Seattle’s superstar in the making.

But what should we expect from Wilson in 2013? That’s a question I’ve been considering for some time now.

On one hand, Wilson isn’t likely to have any noticeable sophomore slump. There isn’t a player in the league who spends more time in the film room than Wilson does. By the time the season rolls around, its unlikely that there will be any wrinkle a defense can throw at him that he wont be ready for.

On the other hand, how much room in there for growth, at least statistically. No matter how much better Wilson plays, he’s still going to be playing in Seattle’s run-first offense. Wilson is unlikely to get more than 25 pass attempts per game. That’s no knock on him, it’s just the way that the Pete Carroll and the Seahawks want to play the game.

30 passing TDs might be all we see from Wilson in 2013. In fact, it might be better if we don’t see too many more than that. That would mean that the defense and running game are doing their jobs, and the Seahawks don’t need Wilson to throw a lot.

One thing I do expect us to see more of this season is Wilson changing the play at the line. The Seahawks gave him very little control to audible in 2012, and it lead to Marshawn Lynch running the ball into stacked defensive fronts more than any other RB in the league.

Wilson needs to be given the option to change those plays, and put the team in a situation where they’re more likely to be successful. Given Wilson’s affinity for studying in the film room, I don’t see any reason for the Seahawks not to give him that power.

Overall, I think the Russell Wilson we saw in the final 8 games of 2012 is likely the Russell Wilson we’re going to see in 2013. He might be a little more efficient. Hopefully he’ll run a little less because the team wont need to do so. Ultimately though, I don’t expect the stat sheets to look much different.

And that’s not a bad thing. Wilson was already a top 5 QB during that stretch. If Wilson continues to play at that level in 2013, the Seahawks will be very happy. I think that, as fans, we’ll all be very happy as well.

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  • Michael Terry

    With his professionalism, the way they said he led things at practice, his constant film work, and his history of good decision making, it’s unconscionable they didn’t let him call audibles last year. I thought it was despicable. It hurt the same way leashing him at the start of the year hurt. Big Balls Pete is getting more conservative all the time and it’s hurting. I used to love how much he went for it on 4th down at USC, and here he’s merely middle-of-the-road in play calling aggressiveness. Fortune favors the bold and, in the NFL, the numbers are usually with bold calls. Anyway, back to allowing Wilson to audible, even a small balls coach would have let Wilson do it last year. SMH.

    • 12thMan_Rising

      I was very surprised that Wilson didn’t have at least some control by the end of the season. Even if it was limited in nature, any ability to audible would have only meant good things for the Seahawks in my opinion. I certainly hope the team gives him that power to start the 2013 season.

  • Bruce McDermott

    The worst thing about your original article on Wilson was that you stole 5/8th of an inch from him.

    • 12thMan_Rising

      well, I was taught that you’re not 5-11 unless you’re 5-11. 5-10 and 7/8 is still 5-10. We see this with players who are over 6 ft. Almost all are rounded down, no matter how big the fraction is. We only ever seem to round up with players who are under 6 ft. It’s annoyingly hypocritical.

      I honestly wasn’t trying to steal 5/8 of an inch from Wilson, I just didn’t want include the fraction every time i referred to his height. I was just trying to be consistant to the previously established conventions.

      • Hawk_Eye

        I agree you shouldn’t have to say or write 5″10″ and 5/8 every time, however if your going to round it off, the correct math is to the next larger number. Just saying…

        • 12thMan_Rising

          It is, but heights aren’t math. I was taught it’s dishonest for someone who’s not 6 ft to say they are, even if they’re only short some tiny fraction of an inch. Therefore, it is proper to always round down, no matter what.

          Its funny that people care so much about this with Wilson, but dont seem to mind when the it’s done to everyone else. Apparently it’s a touchy subject.

          • Hawk_Eye

            Hey, Keith. I’m not passionate or trying to argue the fact. I just think your wrong on this one. Heights are numbers and numbers are math. It is NOT dishonest to say your 6 feet if you measure 5′ 11 and 3/4 inches. It is just proper math. It is dishonest to say your 6 feet if you measure 5′ 11 and 1/4 inches.

            There are many agencies in the US that measures your height for legal purposes and you’ll find the ones that round it off, they all round it off to the nearest inch. It is just fact and proper math.

            I found this on the US Army website about height measurements: “Height will be measured in stocking feet (without shoes), standing on a flat surface with the chin parallel to the floor. The body will be straight but not rigid, similar to the position of attention. The measurement will be rounded to the nearest inch with the following guidelines: If the height fraction is less than 1/2 inch, round down to the nearest whole number in inches; if the height fraction is 1/2 inch or greater, round up to the next highest whole number in inches.”

          • 12thMan_Rising

            I’m certainly not going to argue with Army. I’m not that stupid.

            All I was saying was that rounding down was the way I was taught, and the way that the NFL does things for most players.

  • jimpassi

    we are all Russ fan’s by now the only ones that hyate him is 49 re fans hahahaha. most Qb have a slump the next year i hope russ does not cam did & so many others as well. so i would not hold it agasnt him if he did have one.
    i am a hawk fan from 1976 the best is yet to come GO HAWKS

    • 12thMan_Rising

      The slump in the 2nd year is caused by defenses getting a chance to study the QB in the offseason and learning ways to attack him better. This decrease in performance lasts until the QB adapts to the defensive changes, usually only 5-6 games.

      With Wilson, he’s so good at his film study and self-evaluation, I just have a tough time seeing defenses coming up with some plan to attack him that’ll work for more than a single game. At that point, He’ll adapt and make the defensive adjustments meaningless.

      We’ll see of course. Anything is possible, but I’ll be very surprised if it happens.