Seahawks' Wilson familiar with Super-bound 49ers
NEW ORLEANS -- Colin Kaepernick might be all the rage at this year's Super Bowl, but the most recent quarterback to beat San Francisco and its wunderkind second-year passer showed up here today with a little buzz of his own attached to his name. Seattle rookie Russell Wilson told me this year's Super Bowl will be difficult to watch, knowing that he and his Seahawks teammates crushed the 49ers 42-13 as recently as Week 16 of the regular season.
"Yeah, it'll definitely be tough to watch,'' said Wilson Thursday morning, during a promotional appearance at the Gatorade Sport Science Institute's "Fuel Bar'' in the Super Bowl media center. "You have such great appreciation for what they do, and we have respect for the 49ers. But at the same time, I wish I was playing this game as well.
"When we played them in Week 16, we capitalized on opportunities. We were like 11 of 12 on third downs. That's unbelievable in the NFL, especially against a team like that. We were lights out.''
San Francisco's 29-point loss in Seattle that Sunday night represented the biggest defeat of head coach Jim Harbaugh's tenure with the 49ers, and adding a little further insult, it fell on his 49th birthday.
Along with Kaepernick, Robert Griffin III, and Cam Newton, Wilson is part of a new breed of athletic quarterbacks who have emerged in the past two seasons, challenging defenses with their legs almost as much as their arms. But the 49ers weren't effective in Week 16 against Seattle. The 49ers trailed 35-6 with 18 minutes to play in the game, and Kaepernick's 72.0 passer rating was the lowest of his brief NFL career. Only the Seahawks and Rams, in a 16-13 defeat of the 49ers in Week 13, have beaten Kaepernick.
"Kaepernick is a very, very explosive player,'' Wilson said. "You watch him run, and once he gets out of the pocket, he's very fast, with a great stride length. He can run for days, and he can really throw the football. He's got a lot of zip on the ball, and he seems like a very poised kid. I think he's going to be very, very good for the 49ers for a long time, and it's going to be fun to play against him for a long time.''
Wilson also is in town for Saturday's NFL Honors show, where he'll find out if he was able to edge out the likes of Andrew Luck, Griffin and others in the balloting for the NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Year vote. I told him he got my vote on the Associated Press ballot I filled out, and I'm pretty sure I wasn't alone in my assessment.
"I definitely think I have a shot,'' said Wilson, who gave a Fuel Bar presentation on proper hydration and nutritional habits for the pro or weekend athlete. "Even coming in as a third-round pick, my goal was to be the best one. I want to be the guy who changed people's minds and made 31 other teams regret their choices.''