Russell Wilson: His greatness compared to other quarterbacks

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 04: Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates after a touchdown against the Miami Dolphins during the fourth quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on October 04, 2020 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - OCTOBER 04: Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates after a touchdown against the Miami Dolphins during the fourth quarter at Hard Rock Stadium on October 04, 2020 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

Ever since Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson entered the 2012 draft I have been a Russell Wilson skeptic. I was no great fan of his whilst he was at Wisconsin and was far from surprised when Wilson went as the sixth QB taken behind Andrew Luck, RGIII, Ryan Tannehill, Brandon Weeden and Brock Osweiler in 2012.

Indeed I may have drafted him after Nick Foles, and definitely after Kirk Cousins who were the seventh and eighth QB’s taken in 2012. But Wilson has fed me plenty of humble pie over the years as a result.

I have still retained some of my 2012 skepticism though and have had regular debates whether Wilson would be seen as a great QB or not. My view has somewhat stubbornly remained that Wilson is a very good QB but not a great one, I have recently had such a debate where I questioned if Wilson was even one of the best five QB’s currently in the NFL.

So, being the sort of guy that sometimes likes to challenge conventional thinking and challenge it, I thought it was time to challenge my own conventional thinking when it comes to Russell Wilson.

Is Russell Wilson a great quarterback?

To do so, I wanted to find some statistical facts that without knowing the answer these stats would provide, would provide a good way of analyzing and rating Wilson amongst the current QB’s in the NFL.

I selected the following categories:

Average scrimmage Passing Yards Per game started.

Average Touchdowns (passing & rushing) per game started.

Average Interceptions thrown per game.

Playoff win percentage.

Number of NFL Season MVP awards obtained.

Number of Super Bowl winners rings obtained.

I then decided that I would set an objective of each of these categories that would win a QB a star and these were the following:

260 Average passing yards per start

1.9 Average Touchdowns per start

0.67 average interceptions per start or fewer

Playoff win percentage greater than .500

Winner of multiple Season MVP awards

Winner of multiple Super Bowl Winners Rings.

(I did make some adjustments to make sure the games recorded were a fair reflection on each QB.)

I then thought it would be a good idea to include great QBs of the past with again some adjustments to allow for the different eras these QBs played in as opposed to the QB-friendly times we live in currently.

So having finished the explanation and preamble, back to the matter in hand. With a maximum of six stars available, only the very greatest should achieve 6 stars. The three by my methods that did so were Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Roger Staubach. Anybody who disagrees with those three can have some of my humble pie if they like.

Next, there were only two 5 star QBs. Steve Young and Aaron Rodgers. Then I had six four-star QB’s and they were, Fran Tarkenton, Joe Montana, Kurt Warner, Brett Favre, John Elway and hold the press, Russell Wilson.

At this point, I thought, all of these years of stubbornly holding on to a belief have been proved wrong. And they had, not only is Russell Wilson a great QB, he comes tenth on my greatest ever list according to the data I had analyzed.

So to all those people I have wronged over the years, and particularly Russell Wilson, I offer my wholehearted apologies. Without meaning to be ungracious in any way about this, I would point out that I have not included anybody that has not completed five seasons in the NFL. For the simple reason that you cannot become great overnight, you need to achieve this over a reasonable length of time.

So the likes of Pat Mahomes, Deshaun Watson, Lamar Jackson, Josh Allen, Baker Mayfield, Joe Burrow, Justin Herbert and Kyler Murray have not been included at this time. But while they are all exciting QBs who have show signs of greatness, time will only tell how great they become, or not. Anyway back to Russell Wilson.

In the six categories I analyzed, his results were:

An average of 260 scrimmage yards per game, Wilson averages 267.

An average of 1.9 touchdowns per game, Wilson averages 2 exactly.

An average of 0.67 interceptions per game or fewer, Wilson averages 0.56.

A play win percentage of .500 or higher. Wilsons win percentage is 0.56

So that is where Wilson’s four stars come from, he has yet to win a season MVP award or win multiple Super Bowl rings. From this, you can see that he could earn more stars, or lose some according to his future performance.

This goes to prove to myself and all fans out there, so not get too entrenched in a point of view. We should all be willing to analyze data and admit it when we were wrong. So Seattle Seahawks should do everything in their power to retain the tenth greatest QB of all time, and if they are forced to let him go, should demand an absolute king’s ransom in return.

For clarity here is how the active QBs rank according to my analysis:

  1. Tom Brady
  2. Aaron Rodgers
  3. Russell Wilson
  4. Ben Roethlisberger
  5. Dak Prescott
  6. Cam Newton
  7. Matt Ryan
  8. Kirk Cousins
  9. Matt Stafford
  10. Jameis Winston
  11. Carson Wentz
  12. Derek Carr
  13. Ryan Tannehill

And the all-time top 20 list:

  1. Tom Brady
  2. Peyton Manning
  3. Roger Staubach
  4. Steve Young
  5. Aaron Rodgers
  6. Fran Tarkenton
  7. Joe Montana
  8. Kurt Warner
  9. Brett Favre
  10. Russell Wilson
  11. John Elway
  12. Bart Starr
  13. Terry Bradshaw
  14. Troy Aikman
  15. Ben Roethlisberger
  16. Dan Marino
  17. Drew Brees
  18. Jim Kelly
  19. Jim Plunkett
  20. Dak Prescott

Next. Our latest Seahawks mock draft. dark

I need to go now, as the alarm on my stove is going off, I think my latest serving of humble pie is ready. P.S. If anybody wants to suggest additions or changes to any criteria or any QBs they think should be on the list, let me know and I will take them into consideration.