Josh Wilson, Seattle’s Most Popular Mediocre Player
When news broke that Josh Wilson had been traded, it piqued my interest enough to see what we got in return. A conditional fifth-round choice, that could upgrade to a fourth based on playing time seemed a little below my expectations. On the roster Richter scale, this registered as about a 5.0. It involved a likely starter, and brought back moderate returns, but was not something to spend too much time analyzing based on Wilson’s relative importance. That is, of course, my perspective. Reading the Twittersphere gives a much different impression. You’d think we just traded Nnamdi Asomugha for a song.
It was the last (hopefully) in a series of reminders of how polarizing a player Wilson was. To be fair, the polarization may have been me vs. the rest of Seahawk Nation. Brock and Salk tweeted that the Seahawks have now traded the two best players off of their defense from 2009, Josh Wilson and Darryl Tapp. Ray Roberts ranted this morning (pre-trade) that it’s absurd that Wilson has to fight for the starting job since he is clearly the best playmaker at CB. Even our own HawkGirl has professed her undying love for Wilson while chatting during past games.
Somebody has to be wrong here, and as usual, it’s all of you. Asomugha is widely considered a top 1-2 CB in the NFL. A couple years ago, he was credited with giving up 65 yards…in 15 games! Wilson got carved up for 65 yards before halftime against the Cardinals. He is not a bad corner. The guy has a knack for making a play now and then. He battles receivers with gusto, and was an above average kick returner. Having him as the starter opposite Tru on opening day was acceptable, but it was a clear area in need of upgrade in the future. The Seahawks clearly decided it was time to see if we could upgrade it now. Roy Lewis and Walter Thurmond have had strong pre-seasons. More on that in a second, but the reality is that I will never mourn giving up a mediocre player, and that’s what Wilson was. He gave up far more big plays than he delivered, and had very little room left to grow. Seahawks fans should cheer the front office not settling for mediocrity when they have younger players pushing for a chance. That’s how you improve.
Walter Thurmond has gotten a lot of pub since early in camp, but Roy Lewis has shown me more than Thurmond. Lewis is playing physical, delivering tight coverage, making his own plays on the ball. Can anyone say for certain that Lewis (or Thurmond) is a lesser player than Wilson? Secondary coach Jerry Gray is not coming up from the college ranks. He is among the most respected coaches in the NFL, and I choose to believe that he has supported this move, and that he sees untapped talent he can use. Before you jump off the Aurora bridge, consider the possibility that we just *upgraded* our CB position *and* got a likely 4th round pick. Oh, and this same front office used one of it’s two 4th round picks this year to draft…you guessed it…Walter Thurmond.
Take your moment to mourn, but realize this is another chance to get better, and that’s fun to watch.