NFL Trade Rumors: Russell Wilson 'Clearly' the Better Quarterback Through Steelers Offseason

Quarterback Russell Wilson has made a new home for himself. According to the Athletic's Mike DeFabo, Wilson "has clearly been the better quarterback" through the Steelers' offseason, outshining Justin Fields while also taking the lion's share of meaningful reps.

The Steelers acquired Wilson in free agency earlier this offseason, then promptly traded with the Chicago Bears to land Fields. Fans across the league eagerly anticipated a quarterback competition, but Wilson was the expected starter then and remains the favorite now.

The Denver Broncos released Wilson earlier this offseason, admitting defeat on one of the most disastrous trades in NFL history. In need of a franchise quarterback, the Broncos traded two first-round picks, two second-round picks, and multiple players to the Seattle Seahawks for Wilson before the 2022 season. They promptly signed him to a five-year, $245 million extension before he played a snap for them. Wilson's Broncos went on to finish dead last in points scored in 2022, and his offenses scored a middling 19.4 points per game over his 30 starts.

Fields didn't fare much better on the Bears. After joining the team as the 11th overall pick of the 2021 NFL Draft, Fields led the Bears to a 10-28 record over three years. Despite his exhilarating ability as a runner (1143 rushing yards in 2022), Fields never developed as a passer, and the Bears decided to move on this offseason, drafting USC quarterback Caleb Williams with the first overall pick.

At the very least, Wilson has shown he can be a winning quarterback in the league. His Broncos flirted with competence last year, finishing 19th in points scored and with an 8-9 record, and some of his surface statistics actually looked respectable (a 26 to 8 touchdown-to-interception ratio, 98.0 passer rating). In 10 seasons with the Seattle Seahawks, he made two Super Bowls and accumulated a 104-53-1 record, all while passing for a more-than-respectable 37059 yards, 292 touchdowns, and 82 interceptions.

In any case, it won't take much for the Steelers to improve on their quarterback play from last year. Between Kenny Pickett, Mitchell Trubisky, and Mason Rudolph, the Steelers averaged 201.2 passing yards per game and totalled 13 passing touchdowns (30th in the league). Despite those struggles, the Steelers finished 10-7. If Wilson (or Fields) can inch the Steelers closer to mediocrity, let alone beyond, the Steelers could easily emerge as a surprise contender in the AFC.

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