Is the best rookie quarterback Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III? One Seahawks player says none of the above.
Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman believes Seattle’s Russell Wilson is actually the best rookie quarterback, and the hype surrounding Luck and RGIII says more about the way the media hypes certain players than anything else.
“They’re going to hype who they’re going to hype, and you’re in the Seattle market, and it doesn’t matter what you do,” Sherman told Mike Garafolo of USA Today. “He’s beat the Bears, the Packers, the Patriots. You show me another quarterback with his resume, and I’ll show you a great quarterback. But he doesn’t get the credit because they don’t want to give him the credit. They don’t want to make him a big name. They make the guys a big name who they want to make a big name. He’s a great quarterback, and he’s probably a little better than those guys.”
Wilson had an outstanding game against the Bears on Sunday, completing 23 of 37 passes for 293 yards, with two touchdowns and no interceptions, while also running for 71 yards. But while it’s nice of Sherman to give Wilson the credit, the Seahawks’ defense is a much bigger reason than Wilson for the fact that Seattle is 7-5 and in good shape to earn a playoff berth.
The Redskins, on the other hand, have a mediocre defense. And the Colts have a terrible defense. So when Griffin and Luck are winning games, they’re having to do a lot more of it themselves. It’s interesting that when Sherman mentions that Wilson beat the Packers, he doesn’t mention that Wilson was 9-of-20 for 106 yards until the replacement refs gifted him with a touchdown pass on what should have been an interception on the final play of a game that the Seahawks should have lost 12-7. Luck beat the Packers, too, only Luck did it by throwing for 362 yards in a 30-27 win.
None of this is meant as a criticism of Wilson, who is having an excellent rookie year. But Griffin has 127 more passing yards than Wilson even though Wilson has played one more game, and Luck — who has had to play from behind because of the Colts’ terrible defense — has 1,252 more passing yards than Wilson.
If the 2012 NFL draft could be done over again, I have no doubt that the Colts would still take Luck first and the Redskins would take Griffin second, and neither team would even consider taking Wilson. But say this for Wilson’s great rookie year: If they could do the draft over again, he’d be more likely to go third overall than to last into the third round.