Wham! In a shocking bit of news that surprised everyone in the sports media business Tuesday, was that the Seattle Seahawks traded away their star quarterback for the last decade in Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos. The trade included quarterback Drew Lock, tight end Noah Fant, defensive lineman Shelby Harris, and a plethora of draft picks, with two of them being in the first round.
A trade shouldn’t be all that shocking, as Wilson was reportedly unhappy with the Seahawks organization before the start of last season with head coach Pete Carroll after two very disappointing seasons with the team. The turmoil boiled even more so this year, but Wilson was out most of the season due to a finger injury. According to Liz Roscher of Yahoo Sports https://sports.yahoo.com/nfl-seahawks-trade-qb-russell-wilson-to-broncos-184524937.html , Wilson’s unhappiness wasn’t the only reason the Seahawks traded him, as the quarterback was seeking a big contract in the Patrick Mahomes range and the Seahawks weren’t seeing eye-to-eye with that in large part due to WIlson’s age (33). Before the trade, Wilson was set to count $37 million against the salary cap for this upcoming season, but with him being traded it will save the Seahawks $11 million.
Wilson even removed the Seahawks from his Twitter bio back in February, which added more speculation for a possible trade.
This trade gives Denver an elite quarterback that they have not had since they won the Super Bowl back in 2016 with Peyton Manning. It also gives the Seahawks a chance to start fresh and rebuild with Wilson gone, as they look to discover an identity in life after him. Last year the Broncos were 27th in plays per game, 25th in pass touchdowns, and ranked near the bottom half of the league in touchdowns (22nd), red zone touchdowns (22nd), and first downs (21st), among others according to https://www.lineups.com/nfl-team-rankings .
Meanwhile, excluding this past season since Wilson was sidelined for most of it going back to the 2020-21 season, the Seahawk's offense was ranked near the top in many offensive categories from points per game (8th), pass touchdowns (3rd), touchdowns (7th), red zone touchdowns (7th), pass completions (11th), and red zone percentage (4th) according to https://www.lineups.com/nfl-team-rankings, in large part due to Wilson’s brilliance in running the offense.
Going to the AFC is going to make it much harder to reach his ultimate goal of reaching the Super Bowl as you have quarterbacks such as Mahomes of the Kansas CIty Chiefs, Josh Allen (Buffalo Bills), Lamar Jackson (Baltimore Ravens), Justin Herbert (Los Angeles Chargers), and the man who was a runner up in the Super Bowl, Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals… Sheesh, talk about a bloodbath.
After the trade was announced, the Bronco's odds to win the Super Bowl improved from 25-1 to 12-1 Tuesday at Caesars Sportsbook. Wilson still has two years and $51 million left on his four-year $140 million extension he signed in April of 2019, that includes base salaries of $19 and $22 million, with $5 million March roster bonuses in each year making up the remainder according to https://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/33454258/sources-seattle-seahawks-trade-qb-russell-wilson-denver-broncos .
During his historic decade as a Seahawk, the team that selected him in the 3rd round in 2012, Wilson was a Super Bowl Champion (2014), second team All-Pro (2019), nine-time Pro Bowler, and led the league in passing yards (2015) and touchdowns (2017).
Will a chance to start fresh in a new location be beneficial to Wilson, and can he help elevate this team to a deep playoff run? One thing I know is to not bet against the leadership of Russell WIlson.