Russell Wilson Far From Blameless In Seahawks' Struggles

Photo: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The 2021 iteration of the Seattle Seahawks is a full-blown disaster. A franchise that has gotten used to the sweet sound of success, the Seahawks have qualified for the playoffs in eight of Russell Wilson's first nine seasons. Those fruitful years are nothing but a distant memory. 

Seattle's latest letdown occurred under the microscope of Monday Night Football. The Seahawks met the Washington Football Team at FedEx Field for a contest that would have wide-ranging implications on both teams’ playoff chances. Washington won a two-point nailbiter that stayed true to Seattle's typical dramatic fashion. The defeat sent the Seahawks to a haunting 3-8, as they continue to inch toward their worst campaign not only in the Wilson era but dating all the way back to 2009. Seattle's offense continues to struggle mightily and accounted for just 267 yards of total offense on Monday.

Wilson is living at the center of their offensive woes. The former Wisconsin quarterback has been in particularly poor form since returning from a mid-season finger injury that allegedly led him to follow a strenuous rehab regimen. The Seahawks are 0-3 since Wilson returned, and both his performance and numbers have been shockingly disappointing. Wilson has completed just 54-of-97 passing attempts while averaging a mere 205 yards per contest in those three showings. The completion percentage of 55.67% is not only well below Wilson's expectations, but it's also well below what anyone would deem acceptable of an NFL starting quarterback, period. Wilson has thrown for two touchdowns and two interceptions in that timeframe.

It would be easy to blame Wilson's multi-week finger injury for his recent struggles, and we certainly can't rule out the possibility, but Wilson's latest outputs reveal concerning late-season trends that date back to last season as well. Despite beginning the 2020 campaign in MVP-form, Wilson's play tailed off drastically toward the conclusion of the year in an awfully similar fashion to what we're currently witnessing. It culminated in a disheartening wild-card loss to their division rival Los Angeles Rams, but the writing was on the wall well before that contest even kicked off. From Week 11 onward, including Seattle's dismaying first-round exit, Wilson averaged under 200 passing yards per game. It's awfully similar to the current low-streak he's on, with just six yards separating last season's downward form with this year's dissatisfying performances.

It's stupefying stuff from one of the game's greatest quarterbacks and head coach Pete Carroll is equally as confused.

“The film doesn’t lie. We’re missing some stuff,” Carroll said after Monday night's defeat. “I don’t know what to make of it. Other than the fact we got to keep battling and keep trying to figure it out. I felt like there’s some guys open tonight with some chances and unfortunately didn’t pick it up.”

At 3-8, Seattle miraculously salvaging their season doesn't appear to be within the realm of possibility. If this truly is Wilson's final act in Seattle, what a forgettable way to conclude an era that began with an unprecedented amount of success.

Written By:

Justin Melo

Staff Writer

Justin Melo is an NFL draft analyst that cut his teeth at The Draft Breakdown and USA Today's Draft Wire. He specializes in interviewing prospects, but also produces big boards, mock drafts, and scouting reports. He also covers the Tennessee Titans nationally for Broadway Sports Media and SB Nation.