Seahawks’ Russell Wilson shares interesting look into on-field mentality
The Seahawks are in the final stretch of the 2019 season and at 10-3 will likely be playing in the playoffs in January.
Leading the charge is star quarterback Russell Wilson, who is in the midst of arguably the best season of his eight-year career.
On Thursday, Wilson joined 710 ESPN’s The Huddle ahead of a matchup with the 5-8 Carolina Panthers in Week 15, one could that could clinch a postseason berth if the Seahawks gets some help from other NFC teams on Sunday.
“Here’s the truth: We’re 10-3,” Wilson said. “If you win the next three games, you’re probably first or second place (in the NFC) or whatever, I don’t really know. And that’s the reality. That’s the truth. The truth is, too, that we can play better and that’s the truth and that’s great to know. If we play better, how far can we go? And I think that’s how simple I try to keep it.”
Wilson and the Seahawks are looking to bounce back from a tough 28-12 loss against the Los Angeles Rams. Since Wilson joined the league, the Seahawks are 30-7 after losses in his career.
Why has he been so successful after losses? He points to having the right mentality.
“The first thing is you go to the truth. What was the truth of the game?” Wilson said. “The truth is we didn’t make as many plays as we wanted to. I keep it at that. I don’t make it overly complicated.”
Wilson said he knows people in the media or online like to spin different takes and numbers after losses, but at the end of the day, you’ve got to go out there and perform at your best.
“I know everyone likes writing things and talking about things and overthinking things and that’s why it’s not an analytical game,” Wilson said. “It’s a little analytical, but it’s really about playing ball. It’s about tackling, it’s about catching, it’s about running, it’s about throwing, it’s about that. And all the other parts matter, but it’s the reality of this game.”
The Seahawks often talk about going 1-0 every week and not looking ahead or behind, and Wilson reiterated that.
“Each game has its own history. So, when I go into this next game, it’s the next challenge, the next moment, the next opportunity so I don’t ever think about the past when I think about this is what we’ve got to do in this on,” he said. “For me to be able to compartmentalize that and also be able to do that week in and week out, I think gives you the best chance to be successful and I think it also gives your team the best chance to be successful and that’s the only option. Failure is not an option, so I think if you love winning you can’t focus on what happened and why you lost, you’ve got to focus on why you’re going to win next.”
From Seahawks teammate to QB ‘guru’
Wilson trains with 710’s Jake Heaps, who is a former Seahawks quarterback and currently coaches for Wilson’s RWQB academy. Last offseason, Wilson gave Heaps a shout out on the Tonight Show, calling him a quarterback guru. He doubled down on those comments about Heaps in person.
“He’s been great,” Wilson said of his former teammate. “Obviously I shared a quarterback room with him and the knowledge that he had, I’ve been in the room with a lot of different QBs and he’s the top one to know the game in my opinion. … Jake’s been phenomenal, he knows the game and we’re fortunate to be able to do a lot of amazing things with kids as well and obviously a lot of great quarterbacks and college guys that are coming out and stuff like that.”
Heaps has helped train Wilson in the offseason, and said Wilson is someone who constantly asks why he’s doing something when working out or training. Wilson had an explanation for that.
“I’m always a person that loves to know the whys,” Wilson said. “I don’t like doing anything if I don’t know why I’m doing it. That’s just me. I’m that way in the sense of I want to know the whys of football. … I think the thing with Jake was when he was talking to me about different things, everybody does things differently and I think for me I want to know why, just so know so when he’s communicating, I understand exactly what he’s saying. What I don’t like is not knowing what he’s saying.”
Connecting with the OC
Much like with Heaps, Wilson has a strong connection with Seahawks offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer.
“He’s been great, he knows the game, he’s been in the game for so long,” Wilson said of the Seahawks’ play-caller. “Obviously his dad (Marty Schottenheimer) was a great coach and should be a Hall of Fame coach in my opinion, and also with Brian Schottenheimer, he’s coached so many great quarterbacks as well, so it was great. We really shared a lot of time. He asked me why do I do this, so it’s been cool. It’s been a great journey and coach Schottenheimer is great and obviously Jake Heaps is the guru as well, so it’s been fun.”
Wilson said when he is learning something, he likes to make it as visual as he can. Heaps said Wilson has acronyms or pictures associated with different plays or routes to help commit things to memory, which Wilson said is true. One of those plays is called ‘Broadway.’
“I remember hitting Ricardo Lockette in the Super Bowl we won, and Ricardo Lockette caught Broadway for the first time,” Wilson said. “And the reason we call it Broadway, and this is how I think about a lot of things, is if you’re going to name it something conceptually, we’ll give it a picture like why Broadway? Because we’re going to the alley. We’re going down the alleyway. So, the alley is a certain place on the field, so yeah, that’s why (we called it that).”
Wilson has been in the MVP discussion throughout the season and is considered one of two favorites for the award with Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson.
“When you think about all the hard work you put into things you want to be successful (in), that’s a sign of winning the MVP in my opinion. That’s how I look at it. It’s winning football,” he said. “I think that the reality is I’m looking forward to the next three games because I know can play a little sharper and play a little better and that’s a good thing. Hopefully we can catch fire here. I’m looking forward to catching fire.”
Wilson talked about much more in the discussion with Heaps, Dave Wyman, Tom Wassell and Stacy Rost. Listen to the full segment in the player below.