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January 14, 2015 at 7:04 PM

Video and quotes: Seattle offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell

Seattle offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell met the media today to talk about the Packers, Russell Wilson, his time with Brett Favre and how that might compare to what Aaron Rodgers is going through right now and more:

(On downplaying the playoffs) Absolutely—I mean that’s how we do it. We’re blessed to be in this situation, but it’s no different. We’ve been preparing for this week every single week—we talk about this being a championship opportunity, and that’s what it is. It just so happens that this time, is it a championship opportunity so we want to be able to treat it as such—we’ve been there, done that, know how to go through it, but we’re excited to be in it.

(On how different do the Packers look) There are different personnel—different guys in different spots, but there are similarities as well. It was a long time ago—they’re a different team and we’re a different team. We’ve changed in a lot of ways—we’re doing a lot of things well at this time so it will be a good, exciting matchup.

(On last week being Russell Wilson’s best game) I don’t know if it was the best—we’ve had all kinds of games. He’s performed at different levels in different areas—you think back to that Washington game, he did a lot of it with his legs so it was a great game but in a different way. So he’s done a lot of nice things—it was a great game for him on third down particularly. He was seeing it really well, he was throwing really well, our guys were executing what we were asking them to do at a high level as well so it was a good performance from them.

(On Russell Wilson having higher numbers in playoffs) I think he prepares from it—I think he prepares for the moment, I think he’s put himself in that situation many times—everywhere he’s been, he’s been a winner and he’s been able to get to that level. So I think he treats it the same way that he wants too; that it’s a championship opportunity that he’s been there before, that he’s done that. I think we do good things around him—obviously he’s not doing it all by himself, there are a lot of guys that are playing at a high level and we’re executing at a high level right now so that helps him as well.

(On Russell Wilson’s preparation) He does that—he’s kind of taking it to another level that the elite guys are able to do that. A lot of times we talk to our players about doing that, but some guys doing things a little bit differently, handle it a little bit differently, and he’s just special in that area. He can see it, he can visualize it, and he puts himself in those situations many of times — even before the season starts, he puts himself in those situations, he goes through those plays, he’s watching tape, and after he’s done watching tape, he’s going back through it in his mind so he’s special in that area.

(On Russell Wilson expressing what he sees) Sometimes it comes up—yes. It depends on the situation, but sometimes it comes up. We do talk about differently scenarios and you have to be able to visualize it because you can’t always see it—sometimes you pull tape up, sometimes you talk about it, but that ends up being a big thing particularly at that position.

(On playing a Wisconsin team in the Packers) Well it’s a storied franchise—I was there for six years as well. It’s a storied franchise—you know that they’re usually in the hunt and it’s cool for us because that’s where we want to be, and we’ve been trying to get to that level for a long time and we’re glad to be back.

(On Aaron Rodgers) It’s impressive—the guy is gritty. He’s always been that way; he prepares himself in a similar way—to be able to play at that high level. He’s been playing at that level for a long time. To see him do that doesn’t surprise me—I know that he’s very gritty, gutty, and he’s going to do everything he can to be out there and he performed well.

(On Brett Favre) I remember him playing through a lot—he’s played through many different injuries—it’s one of those things, those are special guys—whether it’s Aaron [Rodgers] or whether it’s Brett; they’re able to play at a high level, they’re able to block out some of the pain that they have, they’re so focused on what they’re trying to get done, the goals that they have, and the task at hand that they’re able to kind of put some of that stuff to the side that they’re so focused on the game at the time that they don’t know that they’re going through it—it takes a special individual to do that.

(On playing an injured quarterback) I spent a lot of time with Brett [Favre] and he was going no matter what and you expected him to go and you treated the game plan accordingly and most of the time, you were going to do everything in the game that you would normally do. Then, whatever limitations that they might have, they’re able to play with that. For us, when we had Brett, we weren’t changing anything, we weren’t taking things out most of the time—we were going to let him go.

(On deciding to take a player out) Obviously you’re going to protect the guy—you’re not going to let him get himself majorly injured. All the ones that they have—it was things that they could gut through. Just like what Aaron was gutting through, they could do that and it’s not like he was playing through a torn ACL, and the knee was going to fall apart if he got hit or anything, but they’re just gritty guys.

(On Brett Favre’s visualization) Yes—he did that. He really did it on his own—he would go into the meeting rooms and he would talk about things, he was seeing things, he would talk to the players about what he was seeing—it’s kind of a quarterback thing as well to make sure that your receivers are on the same page with you, you talk them through scenarios all the time, and the quarterbacks are usually watching so much tape, that they see a little bit more than some of the other guys and so they try to get back with them and talk about it so there is a lot of it that has to go on.

(On is the offense better than last year/ if so, why) I don’t know if we’re better yet or not—I know we’re a year more mature. The guys that have been in the system for a year, we’re asking them to do some different things than we’ve asked them to do before and in other ways, we’ve put them right back to where we want them. They’re performing well, they’re performing at a high level, we try to get to this level at this time of year, and I think they’re kind of playing together as one. I think that’s the most important thing—they’re playing as a team, they’re understanding what we’re trying to get done, they understand what our philosophy is and I think that helps.           

(On the Seahawks offensive identity) I’m excited about our offense. I love where we’re at. I think our guys are performing really well. I don’t care if we’re compared to our defense or not. I mean we do have an outstanding defense and we get to go out there and perform against our defense every day in practice. I think we hold our own as well. I think we hold our own when we go out there on the field. We have done a lot of great things. We’ve been explosive, we’re able to run the football, we can throw the football, we can do anything we need to do to be able to win the game.

(On Paul Richardson’s value and replacing him on Sunday) Well I thought he was doing a nice job. He’s got speed, we were able to use his speed a little bit and he started to become more involved in the offense the last few weeks. Just getting comfortable with the quarterback and where he was supposed to be, on time, when he was supposed to be there, that kind of thing. And it really ends up being the next man up. We’ve got Ricardo Lockette, we’ve got Chris Matthews, we’ve got 81, can’t think of his name right now—[Kevin] Norwood—that we can put in there as well. All those guys have worked really hard to be able to get in that situation and they’ll be prepared and ready to go.

(On how the Seahawks develop their receivers) We take them as free agents. No, we were able to find, you know John [Schneider] and Pete [Carroll] and the rest of our personnel staff have done a great job of finding guys like Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse and then we drafted a couple last year with [Paul] Richardson and [Kevin] Norwood as well and we’re trying to find the guys that we think are our fit for our offense and are our fit mentality wise and good guys that want to compete and play with the best and play against the best. I think that’s kind of what we look for.

(On Kevin Norwood’s relationship with Russell Wilson despite limited reps) I think he’s got really good rapport. I mean just the last couple days, knowing he has the chance to be active he’s gotten a lot of balls out here, even on the bonus day that we had. He works with them all the time. There was a few weeks back where he was active, I think he had 45 plays in that game. You know we got him a couple throws, it’s not like they haven’t worked together and Kevin’s not ready to go. He’s ready.

(On how Russell Wilson being a third round pick and how Bevell’s opinion of Russell Wilson changes when coaching him versus watching him on tape) How much does the opinion change? First of all you have to give all the credit to John [Schneider]. He was a champion for his college the whole way. As you start to evaluate him, you’re looking at it and those are always the things coaches are looking at. The first thing that comes up is that he was 5’10 ½. That’s part of the evaluation process. If someone walks up to you and says, ‘Hey, take the height out of it, where is he?’ You can’t say anything bad about his game. When you were looking at him coming out of Wisconsin he was very poised in the pocket, he can make plays in the pocket, he can make plays out of the pocket, he was accurate on the move, and he was accurate from the pocket. All the things you want him to do. He played in big games, made big plays in big games. It was all there. I think that (his height) was a number that people were stuck with and you had to be able to look past it and John was able to do that and it has worked out really well for us.

(On how the chemistry between Doug Baldwin and Russell Wilson has improved this year) I don’t know if it has taken a big step forward. I think we have really good rapport between our receivers and our quarterback. We work hard at that we really try to foster that communication and that feel so that they are comfortable with each other. Whether it’s Jermaine [Kearse], you could say that about him and Jermaine, you could say that about him and Doug [Baldwin], it was coming with P Rich [Paul Richardson], it’s just a matter of having opportunities to do it. We work on it in the meeting rooms, we talk all the time, we sit and watch tape together with the receivers and quarterbacks so that there’s always that open communication. I think it’s pretty good.

(On Russell Wilson’s best trait) You could just go on for days probably talking about all the things. Number one his poise, I already talked about that. It’s all intangible stuff you know, I don’t think it has anything to do with the skills on the field. We can all see that. We all know he can throw, he can run, he’s accurate. All those kind of things. I think it’s all the other stuff. The ability to lead, the ability to make big plays in big situations, to always be under control. The way he takes charge of his own preparation and making sure he’s prepared for every situation. We could just go on.

(On if Russell Wilson has changed the way the quarterback position is perceived by winning games without putting up big numbers) I don’t think so. I think the whole goal is to win the game. Whatever we ask of Russell he can do. If we wanted to go to a completely spread offense and throw it every down, he’d be successful at doing that. There’s no doubt in my mind. It’s just not what we do. He’s content with running our offense the way we’re asking him to do it. We’ve got a lot of great players to distribute the ball to. Whether it’s Marshawn [Lynch], whether it’s our tight ends, our receivers. I don’t think it lessens who he is as a quarterback just because he’s not up there with passing yards. He does way more for us than just throwing the ball.



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