MOBILE, Ala. — Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson is short by NFL standards. A short man’s complex, though, he does not have.
As far as Wilson is concerned, scouts and general managers need only to pop in some game film to realize his height won’t have any bearing on his ability to quarterback at the next level.
“You turn on the film and you realize it’s not a factor,” the 5-foot-11 Wilson said Wednesday after Senior Bowl practice. “I don’t get many balls batted down ever. It’s just one of those things that people try to knock on me. But I make all the throws and just try to win games.”
In 2011, his only season with the Badgers after transferring from North Carolina State, Wilson led Wisconsin to an 11-3 record, including a heartbreaking defeat to Oregon in the Rose Bowl. Wilson finished with a career-high 33 touchdown passes to just four interceptions and dramatically improved his accuracy with a 72.8 completion percentage.
Those numbers speak volumes, but what makes Wilson “intriguing,” as NFL network draft guru Mike Mayock says, are his intangibles. Mayock has even gone so far as to compare Wilson to Doug Flutie.
“I wouldn’t be here if I couldn’t throw the football extremely well and couldn’t run well,” Wilson said. “The fact that people talk about my leadership and my intangibles is really important. For a great quarterback, you want to be a great leader, a great competitor, a guy who pays attention to detail. I definitely think I have that.”
Wilson just lacks the height. If teams continue to hold it against him, then so be it. He plans on persevering either way.
“The Lord made me this way for a reason. …” Wilson said. “It’s a bit of motivation, because if that’s the only thing that people can knock on me, it’s not a bad thing.”
Neither is the feedback he’s been getting during conversations from NFL teams.
“Teams really, really like me and my talent and the way I throw the football,” Wilson said. “That’s a great thing. My goal is to be great, to win a Super Bowl one day. I just got to keep working. It takes a lot of hard work, a lot of fortitude to stay in it every single day. But that’s my goal.”