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January 8, 2014 at 8:23 PM

Russell Wilson: “Our preparation is the exact same”

Seattle QB Russell Wilson met the media today in advance of the playoff game Saturday against the Saints. Here are some excerpts of what he had to say:

(On how the Seahawks stay focused without letting the importance of the game being a distraction…) “Well I think that we don’t let this game be too big for us is by the way we’ve prepared all year. You know we’ve had that championship mentality all year, trying to have 1 and 0 mentality and going into every game and treating every game as a championship game. So our preparation is the exact same.”

(On how he stays focused…) “I always say, ‘You’re never nervous when you’re prepared.’ So I’m trying to get prepared this week as well as everybody else on our team. There’s still a lot more work to do. It’s our normal Thursday. So we’re going over all of our third down situations and all that. So that’s going to be one of the most important areas of the game obviously is being great on third down, being great in the red zone. So I think that’s the biggest thing. I’m blessed to play the game of football. To be able to play the game of football and to walk out on to the field every Sunday or in this case on Saturday, it’s going to be a tremendous honor.”

(On what the Seahawks could improve on in terms of third downs…) “On third downs, we just got to find a way to capitalize, continue to get the ball out quick, continue to throw the ball to the right guy at the right time, make sure that we’re protected, making sure we’re still running the ball too and give the ball to Marshawn [Lynch] on our short down distances and just do our thing. I think at the end of the day, we want to keep the down and distance short. That’s the main thing. When we’re 3rd and 11 or 3rd and 10 or 3rd and 9, it’s a lot tougher. They have a great football team and a great defense and Coach Rob Ryan, their defensive coordinator, is a tremendous defensive coordinator. So we’re going to have to be prepared in the best way possible.”

(On his assessment on his performance…) “I think in terms of myself, just continuing to do what I’m doing. I think there’s a couple of areas where I can continue to improve, continue to be a guy that’s relentless in the end zone, try to find ways to get the ball to our play makers. I think that’s the biggest thing; trying to find the right guy at the right time.”

(On if it’s fair for people to judge quarterbacks based on their performance in the post season…) “I think it’s all of your work that you put in. I think it’s all of the work during  the off season, in terms of evaluating your quarterback, in terms of… during the season, you always want to be consistent and I think that’s the biggest thing and to be a great quarterback, you want to be consistent on a weekly basis, you want to be one of the guys that’s always helping your football team win games and being a great, situational quarterback and every year is going to be different But I think in terms of evaluating a quarterback, obviously winning a lot of games and winning games in play offs and hopefully winning Super Bowls, is a great thing. You think about the Tom Bradys the world and that’s what makes him one of the best quarterbacks of all time just because he’s been clutch in the play offs and because he’s been clutch in the past and same as so many other guys like Peyton Manning and Drew Brees and all those other guys as well.”

(On what he believes is his biggest area of growth within the past two seasons…) “I think the thing that I’ve grown a lot, in terms of a particular area is just situational football. Just understanding situations and understanding what to do in those situations and how to be calm and be poised in those situations. I think that’s the biggest thing about playing the quarterback position is being the calm in the storm and just helping everybody else and making the other ten guys in the huddle better. That’s what I try to do come every Sunday, every Saturday.”

(On Percy Harvin’s impact to the team if he’s cleared to play against the Saints…) “Obviously, Percy Harvin is a tremendous football player. If we can get him out there, that’s a great thing for us. He’s an explosive football player that’s for sure. He looks unbelievable so far. So if that’s the case, we’ll be really happy for him too. I think knowing Percy and becoming real good friends with Percy over the past several months, he’s a guy that loves to play the game of football and that’s what you want on your football team. We have so many of those guys, but he’s a guy… he’s one of the best players in the National Football League for sure and he’s just been itching to play. Hopefully we can get him out there, that’ll be exciting. He’s got a lot of speed, he’s got a lot of quickness, got great hands, he’s very physical, loves to bock, and loves to do things the right way.”

(On Robert Turbin and Marshawn Lynch’s impact on the offense…) “Well you think about Robert Turbin, I mean he’s a starting running back. He’s a guy that can… he’s got all of the ability. he’s got great hands, he’s great in protection; he runs the ball very physical, downhill, hes quick, can make all the plays. So to have a backup running back like Robert Turbin makers a huge difference for our football team and help us win games, especially in the fourth quarter when Marshawn [Lynch] has already rushed for hopefully 150 and you got Robert Turbin coming in the game and getting 10m yards at a time too as well. So he can do it all and I have a lot of respect for Robert Tubrin. He’s a good friend of mine obviously, but he knows how to do it all and then you think about Marshawn Lynch and what he brings to our football team, he brings an edge, he brings a certain skill level that you can’t find. His ability to find holes and ability to hit a hole and to run over somebody or make somebody miss or his desire to get in to the end zone is unmatchable.”

(On what he’s learned from playing in the playoffs last year and how that will help his game this year…) “I think the thing you learn in the first time you play in the play offs obviously last year, we went to washing ton D.C. and played the Redskins and then we went to Atlanta and I think the biggest thing is just being able to slow the game down and it’s no different. It’s still 100 yards, it’s still 53 and 1/3, it’s still going to be first, second, third down, it’s still going to be red zone, it’s still going to be two-minute situations. So I think at the end of the day in those games, you just have to be the calm of the storm; you have to bring everybody in and not worry about all the outside things. You have to be able to ignore the noise just stay one play at a time just like always. It’s no different. It’s more exciting, there’s more people watching, and there’s more attention to it. There’s more media here sitting in the room but other than that, it’s no different.”

(On the running game…) “In terms of the running game, we want to be able to run the football downhill, we want to hand the ball off to Marshawn Lynch and Robert Turbin and let them do their thing and then if I ever run it, just get a positive play out of it. So that’s our key to our offense is how we run the football and we always want to be able to run the football extremely well, we want to be able to get two, three, four yards at a time, and then hopefully by the end of the game, those break into 15-20 yard gains.”

(On how much he thinks about the Falcons game last year…) “As I think back to the game we played against Atlanta last year in the play offs and we were so close, we scored with 30 seconds left in the game. You know, I really don’t think about it anymore. It’s one of those things… well now its playoffs and now you think about okay,  the emotions, the feelings that you go through, the energy that was in that stadium. So you revert back to that so that you have something to grab on to. So you have that experience, but every game is going to be different. Every game. This game is going to be different; a different color uniform that we’re playing against, it’s at home. All of those things, all those variables but at the end of the day, the thing that doesn’t change is first, second, third down, and just making the calls and just trusting your calls and trusting your reads and your preparation that you put in it. So I think for me, that experience is great because obviously playing in the playoffs, it’s a little bit different, it’s a little bit more excitement, a little bit more ‘It’s kind of the end of the road’ type thing, where you really want to finish strong. But at the same time, you don’t put any more added pressure on to yourself.”

(On the reason why the Seahawks had fallen behind in games during the post season…) “In terms of the playoff games last year and coming back from behind, I just know we need to start off a little quicker and the biggest thing is just capitalize on those plays. We had a couple of plays in the first two playoff games last year that we  thought that we could’ve capitalized a little bit better on. So if you make those plays, the game is completely different. But the good thing is it shows our resilience and you need to have that to be a championship football team. You need to have that to be able to have that grit to come back and to make the plays and to have that kind of never give up attitude. You have to have that to win a championship in this league.”

(On where he was in his life when the Seahawks were the number 1 seed in the NFC back in 2005…) “Yeah in 2005, I was a sophomore in high school I believe. I was young and obviously in love with football, and I loved the Seahawks logo. But other than that, I didn’t know much about the Seahawks. I knew about Matt Hasselbeck, but other that than that, I didn’t much about the Seahawks. But it was one of those things that I just loved football. I loved watching great teams play, I loved watching great players play and that’s what I remember. They seemed so united back then, that football team and hopefully we seem the same way. Hopefully we bring that to the table in this year’s playoffs and we just got to take one game at a time. I think the thing for us is all these big moments, nothing is too big for us I don’t think and that’s the way that we’ve prepared all year and that focus that we’ve had, that laser-focus that we’ve had, that one practice at a time, one day at a time, one game at a time, has really I believe elevated our play. So hopefully we show that come Saturday night.”



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