The Denver Broncos Offense Has A Russell Wilson Problem

Russell Wilson broke the mould of NFL quarterbacks. The Seahawks’ seventy fifth pick out within the 2012 NFL Draft used to be shorter than the mould. He used to be a cellular QB who thrived out of doors of construction and threw one of the vital prettiest deep balls in NFL historical past.

Ten years later, and simply months got rid of from a messy divorce with Seattle, we’re seeing that perhaps we overvalued what we’d get from the Super Bowl champion. The Broncos’ offense is disjointed, and whilst Wilson isn’t the one wrongdoer, he’s the principle worry.

What’s incorrect with Russell Wilson?

If Denver is to contend within the AFC West, he will have to get started taking part in higher. As spectacular because the protection has been, they’ve performed the Seahawks, Texans, and 49ers in Jimmy Garoppolo’s first get started of the season.

Unfortunately, we’re in “where do I even start” territory. Big performs have buoyed his statistical output. Wilson ranks tenth in Expected Points Added in step with play (EPA/play) thru 3 video games, an excessively first rate tempo. However, he ranks twenty ninth out of 32 eligible quarterbacks in dropback luck charge (40.5%).

Drops were a subject matter for Denver, however they account for handiest about 7% of his makes an attempt. His new setting in Denver have exacerbated the issues we noticed in Seattle with Wilson. Things must sharpen up because the season progresses, however he nonetheless has a protracted method to cross.

Timing problems abound

The frequency by which I used to be screaming at my track in real-time for Wilson to only throw the soccer on the subject of brought about an aneurism. It’s now not utterly honest since I’m staring at those ideas spread at 30,000 ft (this isn’t Soldier Field All-22). However, I’m additionally now not an 11-year veteran QB making just about $50 million in step with season.

Receivers don’t get as open as Courtland Sutton is within the above under very steadily. Wilson isn’t throwing excessive 80 mph fastballs. He has the warmth to suit passes into tight home windows, however this isn’t one among them.

As Sutton hits the highest of his path, Wilson is in one of the vital prettiest wallet an NFL QB will obtain. The Apex (slot) defender is already even with Sutton and is wearing his momentum into the flat, simply because the offensive idea goals to do. The transfer liberate between the 2 receivers suits Sutton towards the protection with the entire box as his route-running oyster.

So what, precisely, is Wilson looking forward to right here? Fred Warner is without doubt one of the most deadly protection linebackers within the NFL, however he’s in no place to make this play, specifically if Wilson throws this move towards the numbers and clear of the safeties within leverage.

Timing and location problems additionally display up within the fast sport.

These are the margins on the NFL degree. All it takes is eighteen inches of distinction. While this turns out like a omit from Wilson, he’s in point of fact simply respecting Warner within the protection. He throws this move low and away to stay it secure from the linebacker’s seize.

The above play is not possible to assign blame to in the event you’re now not within the room with the workforce. The tight finish will have taken this path a backyard too deep. He will have drifted a foot too a ways within, which is why he needed to stretch such a lot for the ball right here. But the Broncos want to capitalize on those performs as a result of Wilson’s fast sport prowess isn’t specifically robust.

Above is a variation of “stick.” The No. 3 receiver to the energy of the formation runs a stick-and-nod, whilst the No. 2 runs a stick after which slides within clear of the flat defender. In any stick variant, the No. 2 is the principle learn, with the No. 3 being the secondary learn and the bottom No. 2 because the tertiary learn.

There’s no drawback with Wilson peeking on the bottom vertical path to begin as a result of that may be a matchup he may just make the most of inside of this name. The Shanahan tree tags {that a} “premier look.” But the Seattle protection takes it away instantly.

Not trusting his eyes

Below, Wilson will get his eyes again frontside, however he comes off the stick and nod to take a look at the slant bottom. It’s nearly as though he’s freestyling his procedure right here.

Did he skip immediately to the nod and wish to assault the seam? If he did, he would have noticed the Hook and Apex defenders each wearing up the seam, which through default makes the principle learn open.

If you gradual issues down, you’ll be able to see him look at KJ Hamler, however he instantly comes off it. Wilson wishes to begin trusting his eyes, getting the ball out of his arms, and taking completions which might be being given to him.

Downfield inaccuracies

The something no person can remove from Wilson all the way through his time in Seattle used to be his downfield passing talent, specifically with Tyler Lockett. Through 3 video games with Denver, that rapport has now not been there with Sutton, Jeudy, and Hamler.

Even Jeudy’s lengthy landing seize towards Seattle used to be grossly underthrown. But he used to be very open, got here again for the ball, and let a neglected Seattle take on and his personal pace do the remainder.

The above throw wasn’t even his worst try from the Seahawks sport. He threw any other deep ball towards the left sideline that drifted yards within and noticed Quandre Diggs nearly pick out it off.

We’ve noticed Wilson make harder throws than this at the common. Sutton does an excellent task of stacking the cornerback and giving Wilson room to paintings with towards the sideline. But Wilson leaves this move within, and Sutton nearly makes an excellent play throughout the cornerback, however the ball falls harmlessly to the turf.

Other problems to this point

The Broncos receivers will have to discover ways to play Wilson’s sport. The QB flourishes taking part in out of doors of the herbal construction of an offense, making giant performs downfield as receivers freestyle their manner towards separation.

But Wilson will have to additionally let that freestyling come naturally as a play breaks down. Too steadily early this season, we’ve noticed a fully inconsistent interior clock and pocket control. He’s both leaving blank wallet or maintaining onto the ball goodbye that he’s taking an pointless sack, like within the first video the place Garrett Bolles’s defender sacks Wilson after many seconds.

All the left take on may just do used to be shrug. Denver made their mattress. Their handiest plan of action is to be affected person with Wilson. He has to determine this out on his personal. One factor that might lend a hand is extra play-action, specifically bootlegs that give Wilson a high-to-low learn on an outdoor vertical idea and more than one crossing patterns.

Allow Wilson to create out of doors of the pocket. Give him simple completions on TE sift block releases to the flat. And clearly, give him play-action, max offer protection to shot performs as he builds a rapport along with his receivers downfield.

Wilson and the Broncos’ offense has been dangerous to this point. Their crimson zone offense will have to fortify, and that’s extra a fabricated from play-calling and premature consequences than Wilson’s play. But when your moderate annual wage is nearing $50 million, you’ll be able to’t command an offense that fails to attain 20 issues 3 weeks in a row.

Dalton Miller is the Lead NFL Analyst at Pro Football Network. You can learn extra of his paintings right here and observe him @daltonbmiller on Twitter and Twitch.

Leave a Comment