The Seattle Seahawks were fighting for the playoff lives just one week ago.
Inside of two minutes, Aaron Rodgers dropped back to pass, connecting with tight end Jimmy Graham in what was a controversial third down conversion to ice the game for the Green Bay Packers. Achieving that yard of gain effectively punched Green Bay's ticket to the NFC Championship game vs. the San Francisco 49ers.
And all Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson could do in that moment was watch.
Final score: 28-23 Packers.
In that game Wilson, who flashed MVP-like brilliance throughout the season, finished the game 21/31, 277 yards and a touchdown. He rushed for 64 more yards.
He left it all out on the field. The entire team did.
But just like that, season over.
Seattle was faced with the reality that there was nothing left for them to do but clean out their lockers, which happened last Monday.
The offseason began, and the work towards next season, for some, began immediately.
Coping with that new reality can be tough, especially for the competitor that is Russell Wilson.
Not playing tomorrow makes me sick... wish I was playing tomorrow fighting for the Championship.— Russell Wilson (@DangeRussWilson) January 19, 2020
"Not playing tomorrow makes me sick... wish I was playing tomorrow fighting for the Championship."
Instead, the 49ers will host the Packers at Levi's Stadium at 3:40pm for a chance to advance to the Super Bowl.
Despite Seattle's consistency in making the playoffs, the Seahawks have been unable to advance to the NFC Championship round or Super Bowl since their back-to-back Super Bowl appearances in 2013 and 2014.
They were bounced from the playoffs in the Divisional Round three times (2015, 2016, 2019) and suffered a first-round loss a year ago to the Dallas Cowboys.
“A lot of people think that we overachieved," Wilson said. "I think we underachieved, in my opinion, because I think the goal should be always winning the Super Bowl. That’s got to be our standard. That’s got to be our focus."
“The reality is that we’ve been very, very good for the past eight years or so, and to go to the playoffs seven of the eight, and to do all those things are special, special things, to go to two Super Bowls, to win one. We’ve got to capture that throughout the whole entire season going into next year. We’ve got to find ways to get better. We’ve got to find ways to get past just the first or second round of the playoffs and get to the final push. That’s the reality. I know that’s why I play the game. I know that’s why a lot of guys in this locker room try to play the game (is) for that. We’ve got to find ways to get better and we’ll try to do everything we can to figure that out.”
Wilson does have a lot to be proud of in his 2019 campaign, though, finishing with 4110 yard passing, with 31 touchdowns against five interceptions. He also rushed in three more touchdowns on 342 total yards.
He'll just have to wait impatiently until the 2020 campaign begins.