Luke Willson: Going to Lions ‘surreal’ after ‘dream come true’ with Seahawks

Mar 21, 2018, 3:45 PM | Updated: 4:02 pm
luke willson, seahawks...
Tight end Luke Willson is back for a second stint with the Seahawks. (AP)
LISTEN: Ex-Seahawks TE Luke Willson has his exit interview after signing with Lions

It was a bittersweet day for 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny, Dave and Moore as the crew bid farewell to Seahawks tight end Luke Willson with their own version of an exit interview.

The Windsor, Ontario native is the latest Seahawks free agent to sign elsewhere this offseason. Willson, a five-year veteran who has spent his career in Seattle, made his decision to sign with the Detroit Lions yesterday. It was a tough one, he told Danny, Dave and Moore, but he’s excited for the new journey.

Seahawks’ 2018 free-agency tracker

Signing with Detroit is also a homecoming of sorts. The Lions’ facility is a 30 minute drive from Willson’s childhood home in Canada. Willson grew up a Lions fan, and his mother works in the city.

“It was a bit surreal,” Willson said of signing his deal. “The last 24 hours have been a whirlwind.”

The Seahawks also lost tight end Jimmy Graham (now with the Packers) this offseason. Seattle offered Willson a one-year deal in 2017, and the thought was there was a possibility they would do the same this year.

“I’m still not 100 percent sure,” Willson said, when asked what his conversation was like with Seattle’s front office. “But it’s weird, because I don’t get to communicate with anyone directly. I could, I guess. But it’s just one of those things where I kind of got mixed messages from the Seahawks on my end, not that I’m upset or bitter with anyone in the organization. I think the world of everyone there, it’s a tremendous organization … I have no ill will or ill feelings. It was just kind of a weird free agency. I’m not really sure what their thoughts were or plans were for me. I thought they wanted me back, then I didn’t think they wanted me back, and then I thought they wanted me back (again), hearing different things from different people, so yeah, here I am today.”

While the most recent free agency period had moments of uneasiness, Willson told Danny, Dave and Moore he feels grateful for his time with the Seahawks.

“Honestly, (it was) a dream come true,” Willson said. “Even off the field, as a person, as a human being, the city of Seattle, being in a system with Pete Carroll and just the energy and competitiveness that he brings every day … I still talk to (my tight end coach) every day, I have a special relationship with him. The amount of passion that everybody in that building brings to football, it kind of ignites you. It’s hard to put into words. And that kind of passion has leaked into the rest of my life as well in a very positive way …

“Some of the leaders that I got to look up to, Sherman and Kam, guys like that, Doug and Jimmy. For me as a person, it was an unbelievable five years. It’s been something very, very special to me.”

Willson also talked about his best moments in Seattle, his favorite play, Techno Thursday, and pleaded with Danny to stop the DeShawn Shead puns. Listen to Willson’s entire interview here.

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