Russell Wilson will thrive in Denver, fueled by an obsession with winning
Russell Wilson has officially been the Broncos starting quarterback for a little more than one week, and in that time he has proven to have the one quality the Broncos so desperately needed in their starting QB.
He has a singular focus (or obsession) on winning.
Given the Broncos history at quarterback and the current state of the franchise, there was no better option than Wilson.
When Wilson isn’t spending time being a family man or philanthropic, every move he makes is dedicated to winning. Like Tom Brady and Peyton Manning, Wilson dedicates his time to the small details.
Wilson had many quotable moments in his introduction to Broncos Country, but one statement stands out, about midway through his initial press conference.
“Winning is everything…Winning is everything… It’s the only thing,” Wilson said.
Wilson’s press conference was one long explanation about how he thinks about winning every day. Wilson spoke about a “wild obsession” on the little things that allow a team to do the big things. He spoke on the importance of the weight room, meetings, arriving at the facility on time and making practice a show.
When asked about reviewing game film of the Broncos, Wilson admitted in the last 10 to 14 days he’s watched all 17 games of the 2022 season “two to three times” in addition to the preseason games. He joked about watching film while on vacation.
Explaining why he watched the preseason, Wilson noted it was to be familiar with the younger players on the roster. Wilson explained he watches full games to capture what he refers to as “gap plays,” which are the few plays every game that decide winning or losing.
There are currently only three NFL quarterbacks that have started more than one Super Bowl and Wilson is one of them. The 2021 season was the first losing season in Wilson’s career, and it’s no coincidence that it was the first time Wilson was injured.
In Wilson’s decade in the NFL, the pieces around him have changed but the success has remained. This is especially important as he joins a Broncos team that has little playoff experience. When Peyton Manning took over in 2012, he joined a roster that had just been in the divisional round of the playoffs, Wilson isn’t as fortunate.
Wilson will have to instill that confidence in his current teammates. Two of the highest paid and most tenured Broncos, Justin Simmons and Garett Bolles, have yet to play a single postseason game.
Leading this inexperienced squad is a task Wilson has embraced.
Just this week, we have pictures of Wilson (wearing a Broncos helmet) throwing with KJ Hamler, Tim Patrick, Cuortland Sutton, and Andrew Beck, while taking snaps from Lloyd Cushenberry.
How much on field success that comes from these throwing sessions probably isn’t much, but it helps build a winning attitude on a team that hasn’t had success in the last six seasons. Wilson is leading by example. Broncos teammates are getting a front row seat to witness how one player built a decade of winning.
The Broncos haven’t beat the Chiefs in since 2015. The Chiefs have controlled them. The six-year run of being the Chiefs doormat is over. “I don’t fear anything,” Wilson said when asked about the highly regarded AFC West. Wilson isn’t scared of the AFC West or playing for an organization that has high standards. John Elway and Peyton Manning didn’t lead the Broncos to a Super Bowl, they led the Broncos to multiple Super Bowls.
Playing quarterback for the Broncos carries more pressure than most other places. Wilson believes in himself, but not through arrogance, but rather a year-round commitment to winning football games.
Wilson asked George Paton and Nathaniel Hackett about their visions on winning, he watched the film of last season, and has already had in person throwing sessions with his teammates. In the last three weeks, Wilson has devoted himself to returning the Broncos to contender status, and it’s only March.
Aaron Rodgers might be the “better” quarterback, but Russell Wilson is the quarterback that was built to win in Denver.