The Denver Broncos believed trading the farm for Russell Wilson was all they needed to compete for a championship.
And while that remains to be seen, the team is currently 2-1 in spite of their shiny new toy at quarterback. Wilson and first-year head coach Nathaniel Hackett have gotten off to a rocky start in the Mile High City.
With 14 games to play, it’s no time to panic, but the Wilson addition has to work when you consider what the Broncos gave up to land the former Seattle Seahawks great.
When the trade was announced, there was a mixed bag of reactions about the move. There were those who believed the compensation was too much and assumed that other factors actually played a bigger role in the deal getting done so quickly.
During a recent appearance on FS1’s “The Herd with Colin Cowherd,” former Saints Super Bowl-winning head coach Sean Payton spoke about the Wilson trade and why the Broncos gave up so much. It wasn’t just about winning a Super Bowl.
“I was always a little leery of this acquisition and, well, I think going into Year 11, I think it was more of the compensation. I think it’s a lot for a player going into his 11th year. But they’re selling a dream and they’re selling a team, and so it’s a more attractive team with a franchise quarterback on it than it was without.”
Russell Wilson has had 8 three-and-outs tonight, most in a game in his NFL career. pic.twitter.com/Wj9FEppnoR
— FOX Sports: NFL (@NFLonFOX) September 26, 2022
Having Russ Wilson Elevates Value Of Broncos Franchise
Payton is alluding to the Broncos being for sale at the time of the Wilson acquisition, and how that looks for prospective owners. The Broncos made the trade and gave draft capital, three proven NFL players and four picks, including two first-round picks and one second-round pick. It was a move previous ownership felt they needed to make the team more attractive for sale. And, for what it’s worth, the new ownership came right in and gave Wilson a new five-year, $245 million extension.
The move solidifies a position that has been a mess for Denver since Peyton Manning won that Super Bowl. Eleven signal-callers have started a game for Denver since the Hall of Famer retired after the 2015 season.
Wilson Has Struggled From The Jump
Wilson’s first game under center for the Broncos was a return trip to Seattle to face the Seahawks, which is a lot to put on any quarterback. Wilson played well, passing for 340 yards, a touchdown and zero interceptions. He didn’t have the opportunity to win it, as Hackett opted for a 64-yard field goal that missed instead of letting Wilson try to make a play on 4th-and-5. But in the two games since, both wins for the Broncos, Wilson has been awful, to put it nicely. He’s passed for just 403 yards, with one touchdown and one interception.
His play was so bad on Sunday night that Eli Manning cracked a joke about how Denver punter Corliss Waitman should’ve gotten the big money deal following his 10-punt, 476-yard performance.
Wilson Takes Jab At Chad Powers aka Eli Manning
During his Wednesday press conference with the media, Wilson made sure to take a dig back at Manning, whom Wilson’s Seahawks never lost to (3-0) during his time with the Giants.
“You talking about Chad Powers? I’m 3-0 against Chad Powers. You know, listen, I think that’s part of the game, man, we’re just having fun and everything else, I have a lot of respect for Peyton and Eli and those guys, you know, I’ve always looked up to those guys, so I’m not stressing about it.”
Sean Payton and Eli both have valid points and Wilson needs to play better. The Broncos’ defense has carried this team, as it has every season since before Peyton Manning retired.
Wilson’s arrival was supposed to jump-start the offense, and so far, the defense has allowed a grand total of 36 points in three games. Offense has scored 43.
“Let Russ cook.”
Nathaniel Hackett: We have food at home.
— Fantasy Life (@MBFantasyLife) September 26, 2022
Time to play better, RUSS! Time to COOK!
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