Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson met the media today to talk about the preseason, his thoughts on Earl Thomas returning punts, what he does in his down time, and more. Here’s a transcript with some video below:
(On if he thinks he is going to play much on Thursday) I’m not sure how much I’m going to play on Thursday. Coach will put me in as long as he can, I’m always willing to play four quarters. The biggest thing for me is just preparing as if I’m playing the whole game, like it’s a championship game and getting ready that game.
(On why would he play in this last preseason game) Well, I think any time you get dressed, laced up with cleats and get out there It’s another experience, another opportunity to learn something. So that’s the biggest thing that I know about getting ready for this game on Thursday. I’m excited to go down to Oakland. I haven’t played in that stadium before, just to be in that stadium and to feel that energy of the crowd and the fields a little bit different so just to be on that turf is going to be unique so I’m excited about it.
(On if things change because they are playing teams that they already play in the regular season) No I don’t think it changes anything. When you play a team that you’re going to play down the road, it’s actually almost in away an advantage because you get to see the players, you get to kind of know the type of calls that they like to call in certain situations. You just get a feel for them and anytime you get to play the game of football it’s a great opportunity. I think our biggest goal is always to win, to find ways to win and capitalize on third down, capitalize in the red zone and find a way to win the game.
(On if it’s weird he has two starting quarterbacks behind him on the roster) I don’t think it’s weird to have two guys who have played, who have been starters before; Obviously Terrelle Pryor with Oakland and Tarvaris Jackson with the Seahawks and the Minnesota Vikings. It’s a good thing for me to get to take game-type reps and just to be in the film room and really talk football. At the same time its professional football so a lot of people have played and a lot of people have played great football before in their past. For me, I just try to prepare whatever way possible and they try to do the same thing, we push each other and it’s a good thing. B.J. Daniels does the same thing as well even though he hasn’t started; he’s played a lot of football in college too.
(On if there is anything he has learned from Terrelle Pryor and Tarvaris Jackson) Well, you know Tarvaris [Jackson], he’s played so much football, he’s the oldest one in the group and so they learn from him. He knows the offense so well so I get to kind of pick his brain a little bit every once in a while. Terrelle [Pryor], he works so hard, his footwork and does so many great things. Just to be around him and what he does on the football field is a positive thing for me because he’s always pushing me. Now I am a self-motivator, I’m always going as hard as I can but just to have somebody else out there who does the same thing and then same thing with Tarvaris Jackson and same thing with B.J. Daniels. We all work so hard and I think that’s what is exciting about quarterback room because we are so dedicated to our craft, and so dedicated with our learning. It all starts with our quarterback coach and coach Smith. He does a really good job with teaching and also having fun at the same time so we enjoy practice every day.
(On what he needed to see from himself this summer and the progress he is at currently) You know, I think I’m doing a good job. I’m still trying to work on a few things here and there. I’m trying to be on time and on the money every day. Just getting the ball to the right guy at the right time. I want my footwork to be as crisp as possible and I’m doing a really good job of that right now, but there’s always room to improve. It’s just starting. It’s just getting going. I always think about it, and it’s only the beginning of my third year. I’ve got a lot more room to grow and it’s a good thing. I’m excited about it. That’s why I come out here early every day. That’s why my focus is so alert right now because I want to try and be the best one day. To do that, I have to be on it every day. I can’t miss a day.
(On how much success there is in preseason and will there be change in the regular season) I think you dumb it down just a little bit. You don’t want to show all of your good plays. We’ve got some great ones. You don’t want to share too much, you know? It’s a strategical thing. When you play a team and you know you have a full week to prepare, you can have some more time to study, learn, and think about plays. You can manipulate what you want to do as with the formation. Coach Bevell does a great job at putting us in great situations. The thing we did really well out here I believe as offense is ever since OTA’s and minicamp we really prepare for the whole entire season. We get everything in and we go over it all the time. Whether its walkthroughs and meetings or obviously on the football field we have an opportunity to refresh our memories, somehow some way. So when we get out here, Coach Bevell does a tremendous job of letting us know what we really need to focus on and we try to get those plays in so when we get in the game, there’s no hesitation. To play this game at a high level and play successfully, you have to have no hesitation when you’re out there. That’s what we’re doing a really good job of and we just have to keep growing and keep building on that.
(On the mood of the week with this week being the last for some) No, the mood doesn’t change at all. I think so many guys are so grateful just to be on this team you know? And so grateful just to be out here and preparing to hopefully make the team. Even for me, that’s my mind set. I’m still trying to make the team. I’m still trying to do everything that I can to just make sure I can be the best quarterback I can possibly be every day. Same thing with the receivers, same thing with tight ends, running backs, and DB’s and everybody down the list. The only thing about professional sports is you’re going to miss some guys every once in a while. Some guys that have done a tremendous job for you, guys that you’ve built relationships with. But, one thing we’ve done a really good job with is those relationships is always stick together. Once you’re a Seahawk with this organization, you kind of always are one. We try to treat people and respect people that way.
(On the value he will get out of the time not playing) There is a tremendous amount of value that I can receive from not playing. It’s kind of stepping back and seeing. One of my goals is when I don’t play is how alert can I be on the sidelines of what’s going on, on the field as if I were in the huddle. As if I’m walking up to the line of scrimmage and recognizing the defense and being so alert. Just calling out the plays and going through the progressions in my head, every play. Same thing when I watch our defense out there if I was playing quarterback what I would do. I think that there is a lot of things I can learn, and gain advantage on watching a team we will play down the road so I think it’s a great thing for me.
(On first impression of Earl Thomas) I thought he was the Michael Jordan of free safeties when I really watched him play. When I really turned on the film and I really studied him, he was just so explosive, so detail oriented, so competitive. He had this fire everyday about him: whether it was in the weight room, whether it’s in the locker room, whether it was obviously playing free safety going from sideline to sideline trying to pick off my footballs as a rookie. It was one of those things that he just brings it every day. I enjoy that passion; I enjoy that energy that he brings. That’s what I love about Earl Thomas, he’s going to be legendary I believe and that’s what we talk about is how can we both get there.
(On how eye opening Earl Thomas was first couple practices) Yeah, he’s an eye opener every day. He’s an eye opener every week, every Sunday. He makes an eye opening play or two or about 15 of them. He’s the best safety in the league I believe because of how he prepares, how he’s so explosive to get to the football, how he can make a huge impact, and I’m excited about being with him for a long time.
(On Earl Thomas returning punts) As long as he catches it, as long as he gets as much as he can get, and hopefully stays up. He’s a competitor. Sometimes you have to put your best players back there and let them see what they can do. He loves it so we’ll see what happens. I’m excited for him.
(On where specifically he has more room to grow) I just think the biggest room to grow, I just want to continue to be great on third downs and try to learn as much as I can, get the ball out quick, and seeing my reads. I’m very very fast right now, but I want to keep learning in that way. If I can do that, I can continue to elevate my game. It’s no one specific thing. I think that if it was one specific thing, I would just try to focus on that. It’s so many areas of your game, especially playing the QB position that you have to bring in and continue to elevate. My footwork, throwing accurate footballs, being on time, recognizing protection, and recognizing coverages. My main focus this off-season was really just my balance. Just how balance can I be, all the time, and every throw that I make.
(On how many hours he’s not thinking of football and what he’s doing) It’s usually a good two to three hour period where I’m just relaxing. I’m pretty good once I get home. I stay here from 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. and I usually get home around 8:30 p.m. For me, those two or three hours, I usually find a show or two to watch. During the season I watch Scandal, I’ve seen Orange is the New Black, I’ve started that one. Just a few shows that I watch. I just play with my dogs now; I got another dog so I kind of just relax in that way.
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