What I’m Hearing: Mike Jones explains why Russell Wilson set a deadline for Seattle and why the Seahawks surprised the NFL by meeting it.
USA TODAY Sports
Rest easy, Seahawks fans — though chances are you were comfortably asleep anyway — Russell Wilson isn’t going to New York (or anywhere else) anytime soon.
Very early Tuesday morning, Seattle’s star quarterback announced on Twitter that he and the team had reached a contract extension.
According to NFL Network and ESPN, the deal is the richest in NFL history, running four years at a price of $140 million, including a record $65 million signing bonus. The average annual value of $35 million allows Wilson to surpass Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers as the highest-paid player in the league. Rodgers had held that mantle since last August.
Now locked up through 2023, despite speculation he wanted to eventually join the Giants, Wilson will receive $107 million guaranteed and even has a no-trade clause, per NFL Network.
“Hey, Seattle,” a shirtless and tired-sounding Wilson said in his post, his wife Ciara resting on his shoulder, “we got a deal.”
Both Wilson and Ciara, apparently from their bedroom — it was after midnight on the West Coast, too — then uttered his signature “Go ‘Hawks” before Wilson added, “I’ll see you all in the morning, time for you all to go to bed.”
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A five-time Pro Bowler, Wilson has led the Seahawks to a winning record in each of his seven seasons, including two Super Bowl berths and the franchise’s only title following the 2013 campaign.
Wilson was set to reach free agency following the 2019 season after completing his current four-year, $87.6 million contract. According to multiple reports, he’d set Monday as a deadline for negotiations to reach a new agreement.
A third-round pick out of Wisconsin in 2012, Wilson has thrown 196 career TD passes, including a league-best 34 in 2017, when he generated more than 80% of the Seahawks’ offense thanks to his arm and legs. Also remarkably durable despite his penchant for running, he’s never missed an NFL game, winning 75 of his 112 regular-season starts while adding an 8-5 ledger in the playoffs.
Wilson’s career passer rating of 100.3 is the second-best in NFL history, trailing only Rodgers’ standard of 103.1.
Follow Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis