Russell Wilson | Draft Breakdown

Russell Wilson

Position QB School Wisconsin
Height 5' 10 5/8" Weight 204 lbs
Class RS Senior Number
All-Star Senior Bowl 40 Time ---

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Has a quick, over-the-top throwing motion that snaps.  Uncanny at finding windows to get his throws off.  Can throw accurately from multiple release platforms from both in the pocket and on the run – a huge advantage that negates concerns about his height.  The only time his height really becomes a disadvantage are on throws over the middle while facing inside pressure – he can be prone off his back foot in this situation.  Turns his back to the defense and shows them the ball in play action. A mechanically proficient passer both dropping back from center and throwing from shotgun.  Displays good trunk rotation, allowing him to maximize velocity.


Nimble, strong, and explosive athlete.  Needs to gain more ground with his first step from under center, but otherwise has a good crossover, plant, and gather on his drops from under center.  Able to execute three, five, and seven step drops, and plays with a sense of timing (hitting his first read at the top of the drop, getting to the secondary reads through the plant and gather).  Excellent at extending the play with his feet and improvising.  Is short, but not small – breaks defenders’ grasps in the pocket with strength and makes them miss in the open field with agility.

Arm Strength

Displays good velocity in the rhythm and timing passing game.  If able to plant and step into his throw, he can make most throws at all three levels of the field.  However, because he cannot throw downhill from the pocket, he is more of a touch passer at the deeper levels.  The ability to throw from multiple release platforms allows him to throw very quickly and with velocity while on the move – however, the deeper the throw, the longer his passes tend to hang in the air.


For the most part, displays good ball placement in the short and intermediate passing game, giving his wide receivers (a fairly limited group that struggles creating separation) opportunities to make catches in stride and gain yardage after the catch.  Excellent sense of timing.  Throws with anticipation, although it doesn’t always show up because his receivers can be late in getting their heads around and looking for the ball. Can be prone to sailing passes over the deep middle.  Excellent ball placement off play action and while on the run.  Capable of making bucket throws in the outside quadrants.


Ran two philosophically different offenses at an extremely high level in his college career, learning one of them in a very compacted time frame.  Eye-level in the pocket and while scrambling is excellent – maintains vision downfield, reading deep to short. Plays with an aggressive mindset – running hard and looking to make big plays against the defense, however, he does not play out of control or hurried.  Like most improvisers, he can be trapped and cut off by the rush and pursuit – when it happens, he can be prone to making blind throws into double coverage or getting intentional grounding calls.  For the most part, though, he is an excellent decision maker while improvising and looks to pass first while on the move, manipulating second level defenders to free up crossers.  Despite being so proficient as an improviser, he is also a very good maker from the pocket within the structure of his offense.

Note: The videos used for this scouting report were almost entirely from Wilson’s senior year at Wisconsin.  For further reading, I highly recommend Matt Waldman’s breakdown of Wilson within N.C. State’s offense.