Russell Wilson has gone public with some of his requests for the Seattle Seahawks’ offseason, but it is no surprise these were mentioned in private conversations with key members of the organization. Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer provided an inside look at Wilson’s recent conversation with Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll, highlighting three key things the franchise quarterback wanted to see addressed before later going public with the ideas. Breer summarizes Wilson’s entire argument with a philosophy that is guiding the quarterback’s very public demands.
“Wilson wanted to take as much control of his football future as possible,” Breer detailed. “More than anything, it was clear he wanted a team truly built around him.”
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Wilson Wants a ‘Different Offensive Philosophy’
First, Wilson wants a “different offensive philosophy” which anyone who has listened to the quarterback’s interviews throughout the last year will find unsurprising. We have heard Wilson plead his case for the Seahawks to not wait until the fourth quarterback to open up the offense, and the quarterback has also referenced playing with more tempo as a recipe for success. The good news is that Wilson was involved in the Seahawks’ recent hiring process and new offensive coordinator Shane Waldron appears to have Wilson’s seal of approval.
“A different offensive philosophy that would maximize him as a player,” Breer described Wilson’s first request. “That box has been checked: I’m told Wilson was fully on board with the hire of new coordinator Shane Waldron, who’s bringing a Sean McVay-styled system from the Rams.”
The Seahawks QB Pushed the Team to Put ‘Real Capital’ into the Offensive Line
As Wilson also indicated in his recent interviews, he wants to see the Seahawks’ offensive line upgraded. The Seahawks unit looked improved last season but drastically failed in the team’s blowout playoff loss to the Rams. Carroll admitted after the loss that the Seahawks have not been able to find an answer for slowing down Aaron Donald. With J.J. Watt heading to the NFC West, this request seems more pertinent than ever.
“An effort to upgrade the offensive line, with the addition of a high-end piece that the team sinks real capital into,” Breer said of Wilson’s request.
This does not appear to be a new request from Wilson as Seahawks general manager John Schneider admitted last offseason that the quarterback wanted “grown men.”
“We look for commonalities and fits and what’s important for our quarterback,” Schneider explained in April 2020, per Sports Illustrated’s Corbin Smith. “We love our quarterback, we want to keep him – we want to have as many grown men in front of him as we possibly can and it was important for us to be able to identify people early on.”
The Seahawks took a quantity versus quality approach during the 2020 free agency period bringing in enough offensive linemen to have a brand new starting five if they wanted. The challenge is most of these players were picked from the bargain bin of free agency, and Wilson is sending a message to the team that it is time to pay up.
The counterargument to Wilson is this is challenging to pull off when the quarterback has a $32 million cap hit. Yet, the Seahawks were not known for having a stellar offensive line even when Wilson’s rookie contract allowed them to spend up for better players.
Wilson Asked for More Communication on the ‘Direction of the Franchise’
Finally, as Wilson referenced in his interview on The Dan Patrick Show, he wants to be more involved in personnel decisions. It is something Wilson admitted to Patrick is not currently the case, at least not to his liking.
“Communication, and agreement, on the direction of the franchise,” Breer explained Wilson’s final point of emphasis.
Overall, Breer emphasized that Wilson wants to see “urgency from the organization.” It explains why Wilson went public with his frustrations and doubled-down on these requests with his agent Mark Rodgers floating four teams where he would be willing to be traded. This will either be the beginning of the end for Wilson’s tenure in Seattle, or the start of a new era where Carroll makes a long-term commitment to making changes starting with the team’s offensive philosophy.