03/09/22 Early Edition. Russell is leaving. Aaron is staying.

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Russell Wilson is taking his bird to Denver, and I’m surprised.

Aaron Rodgers is staying put, and I’m not surprised.

OK. I really didn’t think the Wilson thing would happen. It looked and sounded like Russ’s annual ennui, and seemed headed for its annual resolution. Shameless and Sameness in Seattle.

But here’s what I think happened. Wilson wants to play one way. Pete Carroll wants his team to play another way. Remember a couple of years ago when Wilson got off to that phenomenal start, and was rolling up passing yards and touchdowns like his last name was Mahomes?  And it is true that Wilson, with his baseball background and huge hands, may be the most gifted deep-ball thrower in the NFL. He tasted that bombs-away casserole, and he liked it.

Problem was, Carroll didn’t like it. In fact, it drove him nuts. Pete Carroll wants to run the rock and play defense. Why wouldn’t he want that? He’s been uber-successful doing it, and he knows he is nearing the end of his coaching career.  This is a Sinatra “My Way” ballad.

So let’s examine this. A team (the Seahawks) and a coach (Petey) who want to go ground chuck have parted ways with their wannabe air-it-out QB.

And a team (the Broncos) whose offense has been about as stodgy and low-tech as a Conestoga Wagon went and got themselves a passing game guru (Nathaniel Hackett) for a head coach. And now Denver has a quarterback that can take them from a Wright Brothers offense to a hypersonic fighter jet.

Hackett is happy. So are Broncos fans.

Wilson is happy. He could have rejected this trade had he wanted to.

Petey’s happy.

I’m not certain about the current happiness level of Seahawks fans, although getting Noah Fant (great!), Shelby Harris (a player!), Drew Lock (relax, he’ll be a backup), two first-round picks and a fifth-round pick in exchange for Wilson is quite the haul.

Here’s what makes me happy. The Broncos and Seahawks play each other next season. I can’t wait.

Now. Who’s going to actually play quarterback for the Seahawks? Whoever it turns out to be is going to have to duel Matthew Stafford twice a year.

It would not surprise me if Petey’s starter ends up being Geno Smith. I could not be more serious. Geno plays the way Petey wants to play. And Geno’s teammates love him.

Apparently, the Rodgers to Denver thing was never really a thing. The two teams say they never discussed a deal. It looks like Wilson was Denver’s Plan A from the jump.

After he patched it up with Packers’ G.M. Brian Gutekunst, it already looked like Rodgers was staying in Green Bay, despite his diva-like need to milk as much drama out of it as he could.

Oh, and he milked a reported 200 mill out of it, too. That’s a heckuva milkshake.

Finally, I think A-Rod’s relationship with Davante Adams had a lot to do with keeping him in Title Town.

Damn. I didn’t even get to the Cowboys’ cap-juggling, the Panthers maybe shopping McCaffrey, PGA Commish Jay Monahan telling Lefty to go sit in the corner, or Deion’s toes yet. 

I guess that’s why God invented Thursday’s sports blog post.

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Paul's Bio

I clearly have the attention span of your median fruit fly.Look! Airplane!

Sorry. I’m back.

It’s both a curse and a blessing. I’ve never bought this stuff about, “He who dies with the most toys wins.” But I do think that a wide range of life experiences helps us grow as people, and helps us better relate to other people. I’ve been fortunate. And I am beyond grateful.

I show up on time. I go like hell. I’m a good listener. I hold myself accountable. I own my mistakes. And I have a natural and an insatiable curiosity. I’m never afraid to say, “I don’t know,” when I don’t. But then I try to find out.

The flip side is I’m a lousy ballroom dancer and my clothes sometimes fit me funny.

Stuff matters to me. I care. But while I take that stuff seriously, I try hard to never take myself seriously. As a result, I have sometimes been told, “Paul, it’s hard to tell when you’re serious and when you’re just having some fun. Which is it? Serious or fun?”

My answer is “yes.” But I think that is a legitimate criticism. I promise I’m going to work on that.

This has been the quickest and strangest half-century I’ve ever experienced. During that period, I’ve been afforded amazing opportunities in news and sports journalism across all platforms. I have taught wonderful students at the high school and collegiate level. Always, I learned more from them than they did from me. I’ve been a high school administrator. I spent ten seasons as a high school varsity football coach. I’ve been an advertising executive. I’ve hosted nationally syndicated television entertainment shows. In maybe the biggest honor I ever received, I was selected by NASA to be “Chet The Astronaut” for the “Land The Shuttle” simulator at Space Center Houston. (All I can say there, is “Do as I say, not as I do.” I put that thing in the Everglades more often than not.) Most recently, I just wrapped up a decade as a television news director, during which time our teams distinguished themselves in holding the powerful accountable, achieving both critical and ratings success.

What does all that mean? It means I am profoundly grateful. It also means I’m ready for “next.” So here we are. Radically Rational. It’s an idea I woke up with in 2017. I scribbled “Radically Rational” on a piece of notebook paper and used a magnet to stick it on our refrigerator. I saw it every day, and it just would not leave me alone.

I am second in charge at Radically Rational, LLC. My wife, Jo (also known as BB), is the president. Clearly, I have failed in my attempt to sleep my way to the top of this organization.

I hope you will learn that I’m loyal as a Labrador. But I will admit that this doggie can bite every now and then. My promise to you? I will show up on time. I will go like hell. I will listen to you earnestly and attentively. I will hold myself accountable. I will never be the least bit hesitant to say, “I don’t know,” when I don’t.

But then I’ll try to find out. Let’s do it.