Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images
How will Russell Wilson respond in the Divisional Round?
The Russell Wilson story is well-known now. Wilson, a third-round pick, earned the starting job in the preseason and led the Seattle Seahawks to an 11-5 record and a playoff berth.
In the regular season Wilson was spectacular, throwing for over 3,000 yards and 26 touchdowns while ending up with a quarterback rating of 100.
Wilson was above average in his playoff debut against the Washington Redskins in the Wild Card Round. He threw for 127 yards and a touchdown while leading the team to a 24-14 victory.
Now Wilson and the Seahawks have an encounter with the explosive Atlanta Falcons in the Divisional Round. The good news is, when looking at past quarterbacks in the same situation, Wilson bodes well.
The seven quarterbacks to make it this far since the merger have a 4-3 record in the Divisional Round. Wilson shares many similarities with the winning quarterbacks.
He is surrounded by an elite team. Wilson has an elite defense backing him that only surrenders 15 points per game. He is the leader of an offense that scores 26 points on average and touts a running back in Marshawn Lynch that contributes to the No. 3 ranked rushing attack in the NFL.
The difference between Wilson and the rookies that came before him is simple—Wilson is a dynamic athlete in an offense perfectly suited to his abilities and is part of what is perhaps the most well-rounded team in the NFL today.
While the rookies that preceded him were a liability, Wilson is a leader with the ability to take games over on his own. He has proven that.
NFL history has not seen many quarterbacks in the Divisional Round since the merger, and it potentially has not seen one as good as Wilson until now.
Follow Chris Roling on Twitter for NFL news and analysis.