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Trading Russell Wilson starts a Seahawks rebuild they hope solves their personality crisis

The Seattle Seahawks have made no scarcity of horrible roster strikes in recent times, however buying and selling Russell Wilson isn’t one among them. Which may appear ridiculous when speaking about dealing a 33-year-old MVP-caliber QB at a time the place there’s an enormous scarcity of high quality passers, however it’s a case of recognizing issues weren’t working, accepting a rebuild was on the horizon, and never dragging it out for years of mediocrity.

That’s chilly consolation for followers, who had a brutal Tuesday that not solely noticed Wilson traded to the Broncos, however the launch of linebacker Bobby Wagner, probably the greatest and most beloved gamers in franchise historical past. The reality is, issues merely haven’t been working for Seahawks for a number of years now, whether or not or not Seattle’s document reveals it, and this was a crew within the midst of a character disaster. ESPN’s Invoice Barnwell defined this concern completely.

“As a lot because the Seahawks are transferring on from Wilson as a person, that is an ideological shift for them again to what Carroll believes is the proper formulation for profitable soccer video games. They gained a Tremendous Bowl with a dominant protection, a bodily operating recreation and a quarterback they drafted within the third spherical who was making peanuts and threw the ball 25 instances per recreation. They advanced right into a crew with probably the most costly quarterbacks in soccer and that couldn’t rush the passer. I don’t suppose Carroll, in his coronary heart, believed that change was for the higher.”

That’s actually the crux of the difficulty, and Barnwell is spot on. This was a crew that by no means felt comfy in what it had turn into, and the product confirmed on the sphere. Because the Seahawks’ offense grew to become extra explosive, with an assault led by Wilson, Tyler Lockett and D.Okay. Metcalf, Seattle wasn’t getting higher, and even taking part in in addition to they used to. Video games grew to become nearer, contests that was simple wins had been not gimmes, and these delicate struggles actually rang via within the playoffs, the place the Seahawks hadn’t made it previous the divisional playoff spherical since 2014.

When offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer was fired in 2021 for “philosophical variations” it was the clearest signal Seattle was seeking to transfer in a unique path. He was a proponent of the Air Coryell system, a quick West Coast-style passing assault that prioritized verticality up the seams, deemphasized operating because of this. Schottenheimer was changed with Shane Waldron, who reduce his tooth in Los Angeles with Sean McVay. McVay has at all times preached a run-pass stability, way more akin to the offenses Carroll favored of the previous.

Whereas McVay wanted Matthew Stafford to lastly recover from the hump, the offensive rules being utilized don’t necessitate having an elite quarterback of Wilson’s caliber, particularly with the value related to it.

There’s definitely a college of thought that the Seattle removed the unsuitable man. I perceive those that suppose a premium ought to have been positioned on conserving Wilson, even when that meant eliminating Pete Carroll — however the choice has been made. For higher or worse the Seahawks will transfer ahead with a better eye on getting again what gained them a Tremendous Bowl. That would fly within the face of standard trendy considering if we assume this implies operating the ball extra and passing much less, however that’s the plan.

So we had a state of affairs the place the teaching employees wasn’t pleased with their crew development, a quarterback rising annoyed with the dearth of success, and a vendor’s market on elite passers. Wilson was essentially the most helpful QB obtainable with the information Aaron Rodgers was returning to Inexperienced Bay, so Seattle pulled the set off.

I’ve seen it mentioned that Seattle acquired too little in return, however I feel that’s largely overblown. Rumors had reached some extent the place proposed trades had been tantamount to mendacity about fish measurement. Getting three first spherical choose and extra is one thing that simply isn’t taking place, no matter what’s been reported. It’s my fervent perception that getting two first spherical picks, two second spherical picks, in addition to a younger, beginning tight finish in Noah Fant was an awesome return.

It will look even higher if the Seahawks hadn’t traded two firsts away for Jamal Adams, however a minimum of it helps right that mistake.

Now the Seahawks can rebuild with some vital property. Whether or not that entails playing on somebody like Malik Willis within the draft, or ready and taking part in Drew Lock in 2022. Both means, I feel there’s one thing laudable about recognizing the established order wasn’t working, the NFC West had turn into soccer’s most brutal division, and as a substitute of making an attempt to enter that arms race, stepping again, evaluating and seeking to retool. It’s a high quality we don’t see groups do sufficient, as they desperately flounder for middling success with out understanding {that a} rebuild is required.

So whereas it’s robust to swallow now, I feel the Seahawks are a lot, significantly better positioned transferring ahead, and their future is brighter.

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