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Russell Wilson “devastated” that Nathaniel Hackett was fired, “wish I could’ve played better”

With Greg Penner’s sights set on bringing in a “strong leader focused on winning,” Mike Florio and Chris Simms dive into potential candidates who could be a good fit as the new head coach.

Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson said today that he feels for Nathaniel Hackett, the head coach who was fired yesterday, and believes he bears some of the responsibility for Hackett losing his job.

“First of all, obviously, devastated about Coach Hackett because I think he’s an amazing man, amazing teacher, amazing father, watching him with his kids, and what he’s been able to do and how he’s taught the game for us,” Wilson said. “This season has been a season we never thought was going to happen the way it did. He was a guy who put all of his time and all of his effort into us as players, as staff members, everybody, coaches as well. I think he’s an amazing coach, one of the brighter minds I’ve been around.”

Wilson said he knows he hasn’t played as well as Hackett needed him to play.

“It’s been a crazy season, tons of injuries, tons of everything else, but the reality is I wish I could’ve played better for him,” Wilson said. “I wish I could’ve played at the standard and level that I’ve always played at and know how to play at. So what I do know is he’s resilient, he’s going to be a tremendous coach like I said, and I love him to death and everybody misses him, for sure.”

The next head coach will need to get Wilson to play a whole lot better. And if Wilson plays as badly next year as he did this year, that’s going to raise serious questions about whether the Broncos’ enormous investment was in a past-his-prime quarterback no coach can fix.