BRONCOS

“Wristband-gate” gets spicier, Hackett addresses why Wilson’s wearing one

Nov 10, 2022, 12:32 PM | Updated: 1:14 pm
Nathaniel Hackett...
(Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
(Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

This is the story that just keeps getting more interesting.

A couple of days after Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said former QB Russell Wilson was “resistant” to wearing a wristband to help with play-calling during his time in Seattle, the Broncos QB punched back.

“I won a lot of games there without wearing a wristband,” Wilson said on Wednesday. ” I didn’t know winning or losing mattered if you wore a wristband or not.”

The craziest part is that, unrelated to Carroll’s comments, Wilson actually wore the wristband for the first time all year in Denver’s 21-17 win over the Jaguars. He was also spotted with it at practice this week, so it appears to be a permanent addition.

On Thursday, Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett was asked to chime in on “wristband-gate” after both Carroll and Wilson made national headlines. Hackett was asked specifically why Wilson was now wearing the wristband against the Jaguars.

“Like we’ve said from the very beginning, we’ve been looking at everything. And kind of thinking of anything we can do to help our process, help our offense. Do whatever we have to do. Whether (the wristband) is going to be the reason why we win or lose a game, looking back at the Jacksonville game, I don’t know. But we just always want to evaluate everything and try to find a way to get better. If that’s going to help us get better, then we want to do it,” Hackett said.

104.3 The Fan’s DMac asked Hackett if Wilson was “resistant” to the idea of adding the wristband.

“No. I mean it’s just one of those things we decided collectively as a group that it would help us,” Hackett said.

That’s a direct contradiction of what Carroll claims was the case in Seattle. Regardless, the 2-5 Broncos needed all the help they can get, so if Wilson wearing a wristband solved their offensive troubles, it’s a good idea. Hackett said it can help the process of executing the play-call in a smoother fashion.

“There’s a couple different things. As a play designer, sometimes you want to get a little creative, and those things can get a little bit verbose. So, you want to have it so it’s easier instead of having to call it and then communicating. There’s a whole process from when I give it to him, to when he has to process it, to when he’s got to go in there. Sometimes we get a little elaborate on those things because we’re trying to get a little crazy. So, it allows you to do that,” Hackett said.

Essentially, the head coach hinted that if a complicated play is called, the wristband can help jog Wilson’s memory and get the Broncos’ offense moving faster. It can also be an asset in hostile setting, like the raucous fans Denver faced Week 1 in Seattle. They had multiple delay of game penalties that evening.

“I think it also helps with crowd noise. If you have crowd noise going from him listening to me, he just has to hear one wristband number and then he can go in there and communicate to the guys properly. So, there’s a lot of different things that it’s good for,” Hackett said.

This whole topic has take on a life of its own, but the bottom line is Wilson probably should’ve been wearing the wristband from the jump. All the logic behind it adds up, and Denver’s offense did look significantly better against the Jaguars.

While Carroll’s pettiness is silly, maybe he was onto something.

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