“I want to be the best in the world. If I’m not thinking like that, I’m not going to be successful.” – Seahawks QB Russell Wilson
“I have never been in a game like this…The other thing that was important today – not just the win – but the way Coach McCarthy was with us at halftime…He’s easy to follow.” – Cowboys QB Dak Prescott
“Gardner (Minshew) might be good. Really good…The rest of this year is going be very interesting for a team with four picks in the first two rounds next April.” – King on Jaguars QB Gardner Minshew
STAMFORD, Conn. – Sept. 21, 2020 – Peter King speaks with Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson, who led the Seahawks to a 35-30 victory over New England last night on Sunday Night Football, in this week’s edition of Football Morning in America, available now exclusively on NBCSports.com. King also speaks with Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott, recaps the games and news from Week 2, and hands out his weekly awards.
Across NBC Sports this week, The Rich Eisen Show continues on Peacock and NBCSN at Noon ET. PFT Live featuring Mike Florio and Chris Simms streams live on Peacock at 7 a.m. ET every weekday, followed by The Dan Patrick Show at 9 a.m. ET. Brother From Another, with Michael Holley and Michael Smith, and PFT PM both debut on Peacock this week. ProFootballTalk.com continues to provide the latest offseason news, and the Rotoworld Football Podcast and Chris Simms Unbuttoned podcast discuss Week 1.
The following are highlights from this week’s edition of Football Morning in America:
King on Seattle and Russell Wilson: “Seattle is 2-0 after the scintillating 35-30 win over New England on Sunday night. After two weeks, Wilson’s the most accurate passer in football (82.5 percent), he’s got the most touchdown passes in football (nine), with the highest rating in football (140.0)…We all talk about what an athletic gumby Wilson is, but he does take a pounding too.”
Wilson to King on last night’s game: “Honestly, I think you know they popped me pretty good on the touchdowns that you’re referring to. I think to be able to stay in the pocket and just be able to take all the hits and still make the throws is always the key. Give your guys a chance. My thing is always giving guys a chance.”
King on Wilson’s chances of winning MVP for the first time this season: “Projecting now is silly, but Wilson’s off to the best start of a great career, and you can’t stop him from dreaming.”
Wilson on wanting to be the best: “I want to be the best in the world. If I’m not thinking like that, I’m not going to be successful…I think when you’re trying to be the greatest to do this, you always have to believe that way, think that way, and know that.”
King on Seattle’s offense: “The ‘Let Russ cook’ thing – fans and media wishing he’d be able to create more, the way he did at time Sunday night – is gaining traction, maybe even in the coaches offices…But it’s no secret Wilson has wanted a freer hand in the offense…Seattle looks dangerous and diverse, though, especially when Russ cooks.”
Wilson on Seattle’s offense: “I think I have a tremendous relationship with Coach (Pete) Carroll and also Coach (Brian) Schottenheimer. I don’t think Coach Schotty gets enough credit…I’m trying to go somewhere, you know what I mean? I’m trying to help take this team somewhere special. It takes a lot of hard work. It takes everyone. It’s not just me.”
Dak Prescott on the Cowboy’s come-from-behind win over Atlanta yesterday and their onside kick: “I have never been in a game like this. Maybe the playoff game my rookie year against Green Bay, but we lost that one, and it didn’t come down to a play like this one. It was incredible, honestly. We’ve seen it done in practice. [Offensive coordinator] Kellen Moore saw it get set up, and [quarterbacks coach] Doug Nussmeier told me, ‘Watermelon kick!’”
Prescott on calling Dallas’ onside kick ‘the Watermelon Kick’: “That’s what we call it. The ball just kind of sits there like a watermelon, not on a tee…I asked our punter, Chris Jones, why [the Falcons] wouldn’t just dive on it, and he said the way it spins makes it really hard to do that. They were probably afraid that if they jumped on it, it might get loose and we’d recover.”
King on the onside kick: “It’s actually an ingenious idea. Because players can’t line up more than one yard from the spot of the kickoff, kicking team players can’t get the kind of running start they used to on onside kicks…Cowboy players could run to the skidding ball and attempt to block out, as on a basketball rebound, any opposing players who might be trying to get to the ball.”
Prescott on Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy: “The other thing that was important today – not just the win – but the way Coach McCarthy was with us at halftime. That was an important time for our team. We were down big [29-10 at halftime] and he said, ‘Forget the final score. Let’s see the team we’ve got out there in the second half. Let’s see the men we’ve got.’ He’s easy to follow.”
KING’S WEEK 2 AWARDS
Offensive Players of the Week: Jared Goff, Los Angeles Rams, & Aaron Jones, Green Bay.
King on Goff: “He’s rapidly dispelling doubts about his ability brought on by his 16-pick season last year. Great game for Goff in a tough place to play – made very much easier by the no-fan edict.”
Defensive Player of the Week: Kenny Vaccaro, Tennessee.
King: “The Titans allowed the Jags to score 30 points…without Vaccaro, it would have been worse, and maybe much worse…It’s a terrific all-around game by a terrific safety.”
Special Teams Players of the Week: Harrison Butker, Kansas City, & Stephen Gostkowski, Tennessee.
King on Gostkowski: “The least effective kicker in the league through two weeks has two game-winning field goals through two weeks; he’s the first kicker this century to kick game-winners in the last two minutes of the first two games.”
Coach of the Week: Matt LaFleur, Green Bay.
King: “For all those (like me) who thought the Packers’ stay atop the division would be brief, LaFleur and his team have demonstrated in eight quarters that 2019 was no fluke.”
WEEK 2 NOTES
King on NFL QBs: “The quarterbacks just keep on coming. The over-35 set – (Tom) Brady, (Philip) Rivers, (Ben) Roethlisberger, (Aaron) Rodgers – went 4-0 Sunday, winning by an average of two touchdowns a game. But the QB farm system continues to churn out quality. Eleven of the 13 quarterbacks drafted in the top 10 picks over the past five years started over the weekend.”
King on the injuries around the NFL on Sunday: “We can’t be rash about the rash of injuries, but the NFL and NFLPA must study these especially closely…I think one other thing has to be considered: the loss of a legitimate offseason program, with organized and enforced strength and conditional and speedwork for nine or 10 spring weeks.”
King on Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker: “I’ve never seen anything like what happened at the end of Kansas City 23, L.A. Chargers 20 (overtime)…Before Sunday, the 25-year-old Butker had never kicked a field goal of 58 or more yards in a game. In the span of 90 minutes, he kicked three of them, and two counted.”
Butker on the final sequence: “Definitely the hardest situation I’ve ever been put in. But what gave me a little confidence is how we practice. In practice, I have to hit eight to 10 long field goals, like 54, 63, 65, 58. So some kickers, maybe their leg would get tired kicking three long ones in a row like that.”
King on Jaguars QB Gardner Minshew: “Gardner might be good. Really good…The rest of this year is going be very interesting for a team with four picks in the first two rounds next April – and three or four bright-prospect quarterbacks in the draft.”
King on Detroit: “It’s Sept. 21, and Matt Patricia looks done already…Patricia doesn’t have a lot of time to save his job, not when the Cleveland Browns have five more wins than Patricia since opening day 2018.”
King on the Chargers QB situation: “I would disagree with Anthony Lynn, the Chargers’ coach who said Sunday night that if Tyrod Taylor is “100 percent ready to go,” he’d remain the Chargers’ starting quarterback…Justin Herbert played well enough Sunday to keep the job, for now.”
The following are additional highlights of NBC Sports’ NFL coverage:
- Football Night in America: Week 2 Recap with Mike Tirico, Tony Dungy, Rodney Harrison, and Mike Florio
- Football Night in America: SNF Week 3 Preview: Packers-Saints
- PFT Live with NBC Sports’ Mike Florio and Chris Simms streams live on Peacock from 7 a.m. – 9 a.m. ET on weekdays, followed by The Dan Patrick Show at 9 a.m. ET.
- The Rich Eisen Show continues on Peacock and NBCSN weekdays at Noon ET.
- Brother From Another and PFT PM debut on Peacock this week.
- ProFootballTalk.com continues to provide the latest news and updates.
- The Chris Simms Unbuttoned podcast and Rotoworld Football Podcast discuss Week 2 and look ahead to Week 3.
A new “Football Morning in America” posts every Monday morning exclusively on NBCSports.com through the NFL season. It was announced in May 2019 that King signed an exclusive agreement with NBC Sports Group that included writing a weekly Monday morning NFL column for NBCSports.com; making regular appearances on PFT Live with Mike Florio; and continuing to contribute to Football Night in America, the most-watched studio show in sports.