I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Russell Wilson, is the real deal, and he proved it again on Sunday in Soldier Field. That is why he’s getting the Week 13 NFC West Game Ball. The poise that he plays with, the confidence he instills in his teammates, his unquestioned leadership since joining the team, are all reminiscent of a 10 year veteran, not a rookie third round pick.
Darrell Bevell took notice, and gave him a little more freedom in this offense; let him throw the ball more. It’s worked like a charm, and he is now starting to work his way into offensive rookie of the year discussions alongside RG3 and Andrew Luck.
Wilson and the Seahawks offense stumbled out of the gate, against a tough Bears defense. It was looking eerily similar to last week’s performance against the Dolphins. The Seattle defense kept them in it, as is often the case in hard fought road victories, and Russell Wilson started to find a groove. He was untouchable in the pocket, evading Bears defenders, and either running downfield or creating throwing lanes. These scrambles would lead to brilliant passes made possible only by his extension of the plays. They were Roethlisberger-esque with regards to everything but stature. If he couldn’t find anyone downfield, he had no qualms with running the ball either and picked up 71 yards rushing on the day.
Often criticized for leaving the pocket too soon, Wilson would silence his critics on that front as well. Even in the face of an unrelenting Bears pass rush, Wilson - when possible - showed his poise in the pocket and found receivers downfield. No matter what the challenge, he was up to it. This Bears defense that has been lauded as one of the best all season looked pedestrian against the young Seahawks quarterback. He would torch them for 293 yards and 2 touchdowns on the day, and didn’t have a single turnover.
Best of all though, Russell Wilson showed that he has something very rare in this league, even amongst seasoned veterans. Something that Skip Bayless would call, the “clutch gene”. It’s hard to explain exactly what the clutch gene is, but Russell Wilson’s performance both at the end of the 4th leading his team downfield to score what seemed like a winning touchdown, and in overtime taking advantage of a won coin toss and marching downfield for a touchdown on the first overtime possession, are about as close as it gets. There are some things you just can’t teach. Uncanny abilities, or talents that separate good quarterbacks, from super bowl winning quarterbacks. I’m not gonna sit here, and tell you Wilson’s going to lead Seattle to a Super Bowl, but he’s definitely got some of those dynamics that I’ve seen in Super Bowl victors of years past, and he’s showcasing them in only his first season.