Seattle Seahawks: Can Russell Wilson Win the QB Competition?

Travis WakemanCorrespondent IIAugust 12, 2012

Preseason opener vs. Tennessee
Preseason opener vs. TennesseeOtto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Matt Flynn was one of the most prized free agents on the market this offseason, and when he signed with the Seahawks back in March, it was assumed that they had their new franchise quarterback.

But the following month, the team couldn't resist selecting former Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson in the third round, despite the knocks that draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. had on him.

Wilson has had a good camp for the team and has made what was a two-horse race between Flynn and last year's starter, Tarvaris Jackson, a legitimate three-horse race.

Saturday night, Wilson followed Flynn's 11-of-13 passing performance by going 12-of-16 for 124 yards that included a 39-yard touchdown pass to Braylon Edwards. Both QBs threw interceptions, and Jackson could only watch from the sidelines as the team opted not to play him in the preseason opener.

What sets Wilson apart from Flynn is his mobility, and that was evident on his 32-yard scamper to the end zone in the fourth quarter that put the game on ice for the Seahawks.

Wilson made the most of his opportunities in his first live-game action of his NFL career, and he definitely seems like a player who can defy the odds of being under 6'0".

Between North Carolina State and Wisconsin, Wilson had a brilliant NCAA career, throwing for over 11,000 yards and 130 touchdowns while completing 61 percent of his passes. His superior athleticism is also made clear by the fact that he was once a draft pick of the Colorado Rockies.

Wilson still has a lot left to prove, and being a rookie behind two veteran play-callers who have 36 career starts between them will work against him, but after his performance Saturday night, it might be a little tighter.

After the game, Wilson said (via ESPN), "I felt like I did a really good job, especially for the first time being out there. I was really, really calm (and) just trusted what I saw."

Carroll said that "the quarterbacks did a really nice job" and that "nothing but good stuff came out of this game."

The Seahawks didn't give Flynn a three-year, $26 million contract in the offseason to be a backup, but if nothing else, Wilson is going to make him earn that starting job.