Russell Wilson’s Rocky Start with the Denver Broncos
Russell Wilson, the nine-time Pro Bowler quarterback, was traded to the Denver Broncos in March of 2022, ending a tumultuous relationship with the Seattle Seahawks' leadership. Before the trade, Wilson had asked the Seahawks' ownership to fire head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider, reportedly believing they were hindering his chances for success as a player.
According to a report from The Athletic, Wilson's lawyer denied the report and wrote that it was “entirely fabricated.” Wilson himself also took to Twitter to deny the report, saying that Carroll was a “father figure” and that Schneider had drafted him and believed in him.
Wilson waived his no-trade clause and signed a five-year, $245 million extension before the season. He told his new Broncos teammates he approved of Denver as his destination because he believed the Broncos could win championships.
Unfortunately, his first season in Denver was a disaster, as the team went 5-12 and finished in last place in the AFC West. The Broncos fired first-year coach Nathaniel Hackett after 15 games, and replaced him with Wilson's preferred head coach, Sean Payton. Wilson threw for 3,524 yards and 16 touchdowns, with 11 interceptions and a career-low 60.5% completion rate. A career-high of 55 sacks was inflicted on him.
The Broncos gave Wilson an office at the team facility, a rare perk that Wilson didn't have in Seattle, although one coach questioned whether it was a good idea, saying, “So, are you a coach or are you a player? Your open door should be you sitting at your locker.”
Payton has already said that Wilson's personal coach will not have access to the team facility and that the team will undergo a significant makeover. Whether or not Wilson can turn things around in Denver remains to be seen, but it's clear that he is looking to make a fresh start and put his tumultuous relationship with the Seahawks in the past.
0. “Why did Russell Wilson want to kick Seahawks HC Pete Carroll out for Sean Payton? Fresh report reveals stunning details” Sportskeeda, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.sportskeeda.com/nfl/news-russell-wilson-wanted-sean-payton-replace-pete-carroll-seattle-reports
1. “NFL World Reacts To The Russell Wilson Announcement” msnNOW, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/nfl/nfl-world-reacts-to-the-russell-wilson-announcement/ar-AA17T8Fv
2. “Russell Wilson asked Seahawks to fire Pete Carroll, John Schneider weeks before Broncos trade, per report” CBS Sports, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/news/russell-wilson-asked-seahawks-to-fire-pete-carroll-john-schneider-weeks-before-broncos-trade-per-report/
3. “Russell Wilson denies report he called for Pete Carroll's job in Seattle, lawyer says ‘entirely fabricated'” Fox News, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.foxnews.com/sports/russell-wilson-denies-report-called-pete-carrolls-job-seattle-lawyer-says-entirely-fabricated
4. “Russell Wilson denies he asked Seahawks to fire Pete Carroll, GM before Broncos trade” The Athletic, 24 Feb. 2023, https://theathletic.com/4243182/2023/02/24/russell-wilson-pete-carroll-seahawks-request
5. “Russell Wilson’s first year with Broncos: ‘Too much influence,’ too few wins in disorganized disaster” The Athletic, 24 Feb. 2023, https://theathletic.com/4238804/2023/02/24/russell-wilson-denver-broncos-influence-offense
6. “Russell Wilson requested Seahawks fire Pete Carroll, John Schneider and hire Sean Payton, per report” DraftKings Nation, 24 Feb. 2023, https://dknation.draftkings.com/nfl/2023/2/24/23613255/russell-wilson-requested-seahawks-fire-pete-carroll-john-schneider-hire-sean-payton-broncos-trade
7. “Russell Wilson denies report he asked Seahawks to fire Pete Carroll and John Schneider before Broncos trade” Sporting News, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.sportingnews.com/us/nfl/news/russell-wilson-seahawks-fire-pete-carroll-john-schneider-broncos/iv4gi5eqfytrgk6lqtrni1x7
8. “Russell Wilson wanted Seahawks' Pete Carroll fired; QB denies report” USA TODAY, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nfl/2023/02/24/russell-wilson-wanted-pete-carroll-fired/11337708002
9. “Russell Wilson Reportedly Tried To Get Pete Carroll AND John Schneider Fired In Seattle Before His Trade To The …” Barstool Sports, 24 Feb. 2023, https://www.barstoolsports.com/blog/3457443/russell-wilson-reportedly-tried-to-get-pete-carroll-and-john-schneider-fired-in-seattle-before-his-trade-to-the-broncos
10. “Russell Wilson reportedly asked Seahawks to replace Pete Carroll with Sean Payton before being traded to Broncos” Yahoo Sports, 24 Feb. 2023, https://sports.yahoo.com/russell-wilson-reportedly-asked-seahawks-to-replace-pete-carroll-with-sean-payton-before-being-traded-to-broncos-140611204.html