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Russell Wilson: I haven’t given up baseball, may play both sports

Russell Wilson

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson reaches up to grab a throw as he works out with the Texas Rangers during spring training baseball practice, Monday, March 3, 2014, in Surprise, Ariz. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)


Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson says he’s still considering playing baseball -- and not just for a cameo appearance in spring training.

Wilson told Bryant Gumbel of HBO that it’s still his dream to be a two-sport athlete.

“You never want to kill the dream of playing two sports,” Wilson said. “I would honestly play two sports.”

Asked what’s stopping him, Wilson said, “I don’t know. I may push the envelope a little bit one of these days.”

That’s extremely unlikely. Bo Jackson could be a part-time running back in the 1980s and Deion Sanders could be a part-time cornerback in the 1990s, but being an NFL quarterback in 2015 is a year-round job. It’s just not realistic to think a franchise quarterback could spend his spring and summer playing baseball while his teammates are going through Organized Team Activities, minicamp and training camp. (It’s also worth noting that Wilson is nowhere near as good at baseball as Jackson and Sanders were.)

But if Wilson is looking for leverage in negotiating a long-term contract with the Seahawks, he’s smart to mention baseball. By reminding the Seahawks that he has other options, Wilson is telling them they can’t get away with lowballing him and keeping him in Seattle on the franchise tag if he doesn’t sign a long-term deal. Wilson has another option.

He just doesn’t have as good an option as playing quarterback. That’s what Wilson does best, and that will remain Wilson’s role, no matter how much he talks about baseball.