Excuse fans of the Seattle Seahawks for being paranoid, but the names Kelly Stouffer, Dan McGwire, and Rick Mirer do not exactly inspire good memories. In case you didn’t know, those three quarterbacks were first-round busts of the Seahawks.
Stouffer was actually the sixth overall pick by the then Arizona Cardinals–then called the Phoenix Cardinals after having just left St. Louis–in 1987 and held out the entire season. The Cardinals later traded for him in a deal that included their first-round choice in 1988. He was the very definition of a bust.
The Seahawks used the 16th overall pick in the 1991 draft on Dan McGwire. He was so horrible that the team used a first-round pick just two years later on another quarterback, Rick Mirer, with the second overall selection in 1993. Mirer didn’t work out, although they were able to trade him to the Chicago Bears in a deal that included the return of a first-rounder.
In fact, the most successful quarterbacks in franchise history were not high picks. Jim Zorn, Dave Kreig, and a past his prime Warren Moon, are among the best in team history. Each of them were undrafted out of college.
The best quarterback in team history is Matt Hasselbeck, who was a sixth-round pick of the Green Bay Packers in 1998. Hasselbeck was acquired from the Packers in 2001, although he cost the team their first-round pick, which was the 10th pick overall. However, the Packers also sent a first-round pick back to Seattle in the deal, which was the 17th selection. Those picks were the biggest aspects of the deal.
Matt Flynn, like Hasselbeck, was a former late-round pick by the Packers who became a Seahawk. Flynn was predicted to be the starter after signing as a free agent in 2011. However, two things happened that prevented him from ever starting in Seattle.
The first was elbow tendinitis that prevented Flynn from playing against the Kansas City Chiefs in the all-important third game of the preseason. This was the game where Russell Wilson exploded and took the job by storm.
The second was simply Wilson being Wilson. The guy is a freak. I doubt he is really even human. If someone didn’t take a blood sample at the NFL combine in 2012, they should have.
Is he too good to be true? He is well spoken, humble, talented, a hard worker, and the list of positives can go on forever. Fans of the Seahawks love this guy. In speaking with Seattle fans, these are the kind of responses you get when asked about their quarterback:
Tom, from Point Hadlock, Wa. says that his favorite part about Wilson “is his cool under pressure,” and that he enjoys “his veteran like savvy at crunch time.”
Andrew from Vancouver, BC, states that “Russell Wilson is just such a class act.” One of his favorite attributes is “If he is down by seven with 60 seconds left he just expects to get a touchdown and goes about getting it done. There is no quit – just determination.”
Dave from Manchester, United Kingdom likes “the fact that he is a workaholic who studies and promotes his study as the best way to achieve continual improvement.” In addition, he stated “I love the way you always knew he had confidence in his ability to win the starting quarterback job in his first year but never promoted the confidence in an arrogant way.”
Also mentioned by Dave, from a half-world away in the U.K., is that “in the modern era of superstar persona sports men, he is a diamond in the rough – not only because of his diminutive stature both physically and geographically in correlation with the rest of the league stars, but he is a true example of defeating all odds, a true David among a world of NFL Goliaths.”
In an organization that has been burned by first-round draft picks and done well with underdogs at quarterback, is it any wonder why fans of the Seahawks love a guy like Wilson?