Why Russell Wilson to Chicago Bears makes sense for the player and Seattle Seahawks

Russell Wilson started the 2020 season on course for a record year, but as the second half rolled around, the shine came off. His Seattle Seahawks team were faced with the same old problems and despite winning the NFC West, they still couldn’t progress past the LA Rams in the play-offs, even with home-field advantage.

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson looks set to leave. Picture: Harry How/Getty Images

In the 2012 draft, Wilson was selected in the third round, later winning the starting job in training camp and has spent nine seasons as the face of the franchise in the pacific northwest.

Wilson’s career with the Seahawks has been exemplary; the quarterback has been a textbook example of a franchise player and has bled blue and green.

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So it was a big surprise when, a little over three weeks ago, Wilson’s agent dropped a list of teams the quarterback would consider being traded to.

Sam Darnold of the New York Jets is well known to Seattle coach Pete Carroll. Picture: Sean M Haffey/Getty Images

The fact that the list even existed hints at a more troubled relationship behind the scenes, but when the organisation then sent out season packs for next year without Wilson’s image, the rift seemed to be confirmed.

With Wilson, the Seahawks made back to back Superbowl appearances in 2014 and 2015, with Seattle winning the first and losing the second. In that second game, the first cracks started appearing as the Seahawks lost when a pass was intercepted on the New England one-yard line.

The immediate fall-out wasn’t felt then, but it became clear when head coach Pete Carroll shifted back to what he knows, which is solid defence and running the ball.

Skip forward, and Wilson showed this year what he could do in the passing game when he is given time and is protected. But, after an increase in turnovers, Carroll returned to his run-first offence.

Wilson has discussed his unhappiness with the level of protection he is receiving. He has been sacked more than any other player, a shocking 394 times, nearly 100 times more than Aaron Rodgers in the same period.

The four teams from Wilsons’ agent’s list that were mentioned publicly were the Raiders, Bears, Cowboys and Saints, although as the offseason has progressed, these teams have slowly secured their own quarterbacks.

Dallas agreed a mega-contract with Dak Prescott, while the Saints have retained both Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill and the Raiders never seemed interested in moving on from Derek Carr.

But Chicago always seemed the favourites. In fact, stores in Chicago started taking pre-orders on Wilson Bears jerseys. Then the Chicago front office moved for a quarterback and picked up former Cowboys back-up Andy Dalton, effectively closing the door on the Wilson deal.

But all is not lost.

Obviously, Seahawks fans don’t want to lose a player who has been the shining star of the franchise during the last decade, but now could be the ideal time for Seattle to move on and secure a bumper package in the process.

For any deal to be made now, it looks like Chicago would need a third party to get involved, and lucky for them, there is one. The New York Jets have a high draft pick and a quarterback under a rookie contract, but new head coach Robert Saleh seems ready to move on from Sam Darnold.

Darnold hasn’t been great and arguably hasn’t even been good during his three-year career in New York, but in his defence, the Jets have been the laughing stock of the NFL in that time.

Carroll seems keen on Darnold, a former quarterback with University of Southern California, the college team Carroll himself coached before moving to the pros.

He would be getting a quarterback who will serve them for a season, more than enough time to be evaluated, while Seattle would also get an excellent haul, including multiple first-round draft picks.

Wilson has his eyes set on a new adventure or at least the chance to play in an offence that he feels suits his skill set. Chicago would worship an elite quarterback, something some fans would argue they’ve never had and Darnold deserves a chance with a decent team. It’s a win-win for everyone, well, everyone apart from Andy Dalton.

Seattle would also clear a $100 million from the next three years and give the team a chance they need to go deep in the playoffs, a place where Wilson’s production hasn’t been near what’s needed.

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