The visual was a bit noisy. Russell Wilson, right hand in bulky cast and brace, Thursday workout in jersey and helmet. Left-handed throw.
“It’s really not bad,” Jenno Smith joked, starting quarterback for the Seahawks today. “I would say it’s not actually terrible. I’d describe it as a work in progress. But I hope he doesn’t have to do it any longer.”
For the next three weeks, that will be all Wilson can do. He was Officially placed on the injured reserve Before Sunday, which means it will take at least three weeks for him to be able to wear a helmet and T-shirt during training. For now, Smith’s show will start tonight versus the Steelers.
“Read it, do it, go play football,” Smith told NFL.com Friday, before considering one last action-packed game. “Ross is a very strong guy, and I almost begged him not to come back into the game. You can see he’s injured, he didn’t want to go out. But just getting this chance to go in there, he was thinking, ‘How are we going to win this match now?’” He was entering, ‘Try to win the match.’
They almost did. A rarely needed backup threw just nine assists from 2018-2020 – thanks to Wilson’s endless starting streak – Smith took all the first-team representatives into practice this week after an impressive display last week.
In a phone conversation after the week of preparation, Smith ignored the huge difference between the two weeks. He was told this was his first start in a while.
“First of all, my first run in a short period, but I’ve always played in pre-season and started in that,” Smith said. “So, it’s not like I never played football. The difference now, it’s physical reps. I get all the reps. You always take mental reps and prepare that way, but that’s about being physically prepared like well, more than just the mental aspect.” To play a quarterback. This week was different because I’m taking physical reps too.”
Smith was 10th out of 17 for 131 yards with a touchdown last week against the Rams. He led a comeback attempt that failed after Tyler Lockett went down and a pass was intercepted. With all those throws plus all the reps this week. Smith was asked how tired his arm was.
“No man, I’m new,” Smith said. “I feel like I’m 21. I’m ready!”
Smith said the week of training was good and efficient, with Wilson doing his usual job of preparing his teammates. For Wilson, it was business as usual.
“It works nonstop,” Smith said. “That’s all he does, that’s all we do. I think that’s why we’re so close — we both love what we do. We have a love for the game. Ultimately, it’s about setting standards for each other. That’s the one thing you have to live up to. “The standard you set for yourself. Whatever someone else thinks, that’s their problem. I love Ross for being the ultimate contender and a very strong guy. He just goes out and gets ready to play like he always does. I just take reps on the field, he’s not.”
The former aircraft clerk, who was famous for his filling Eli Manning With the Giants too, she has a chance, start tonight. He can, perhaps, show a few people that he belongs in the league for a start. Not that he’s not focusing on that or anything else.
“The moment is what it is,” Smith concluded. “We have a game Sunday night in Pittsburgh. It’s one night, not the rest of my life. Mostly, it’s a game that I love to play, and it’s a game I’m excited about. It’s a game that I prepare for and I’m ready for whether I’m going to play or not. It’s not a chance to showcase anything.” That’s how I see it. I won’t change my look. I’m just looking forward to playing football.”
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