Russell Wilson's agent: Contract talks with Seahawks are 'encouraging'

Mark Rodgers, the agent for Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, said Thursday that negotiations on a new contract for Wilson have been "positive and encouraging," but there is no deadline for getting a new deal done.

"We've had an ongoing dialogue, not all of it being a negotiation,'' Rodgers told 710 ESPN radio in Seattle in his first public comments about the negotiations. "Some of it just being philosophical and really trying to understand each other's positions.

"I would characterize our talks as ongoing, fluid, robust at times, thoughtful and we've made progress. Frankly, about 95 percent of the speculation has been off point. I would characterize [the negotiations] as positive and encouraging."

Wilson is entering the final year of his rookie contract, which will pay him $1.54 million this season. He signed a four-year, $2.99 million deal in May 2012 after the Seahawks drafted him in the third round out of Wisconsin.

Rodgers, who answered questions for 25 minutes, would not get into the actual numbers being discussed. Wilson is believed to be seeking a contract of more than $100 million over five years.

"What he's looking for is what everybody is looking for," Rodgers said, "a deal that feels fair, feels reasonable and at the end of the day makes him feel comfortable with the compensation he's receiving from the skill and performance he's delivered."

Rodgers was asked whether he feels Wilson's accomplishments in leading the Seahawks to back-to-back Super Bowls give him leverage in the negotiations.

"Leverage is a funny word," Rodgers said. "Is it real leverage or perceived leverage? Leverage oftentimes can turn into a threat. None of our conversations have been threatening at all.

"I'm not looking for leverage and looking to beat these guys down, and I don't think they're looking for that. [Seahawks vice president of football operations] Matt Thomas and [general manager] John Schneider have done a very good job of laying out their system and their approach. And I think they understand how we view Russell."

Rodgers emphasized they have no timetable to get a new deal done.

"Neither side has any real deadline,'' he said. "I know the fans and the media have put a sense of urgency on this. There are no deadlines. Russell is under contract with the Seahawks and he certainly would be fine playing his fourth year under the contract he signed coming out and them moving on from there.

"Financially, we have planned for him to play for the $1.5 million [in 2015]. There isn't any expectation for additional money coming from the Seahawks this year. Russell doesn't have a mortgage; he doesn't have a car payment. We've kept those things out of the realm for him because at this point in his life he can't make those financial obligations from a planning standpoint."

Rodgers would not say whether he believes Wilson should be compensated as an elite NFL quarterback.

"You don't go into it with that as the goal," Rodgers said. "To get caught up in those kinds of labels like 'highest-paid quarterback,' 'new benchmark,' those types of things, is not a goal. My goal is for Russell to be satisfied with the result. How I feel doesn't matter. What really matters are the facts and how we can get closer to a resolution so both sides get what they want."

Rodgers, however, did make his point about Wilson's winning record.

"The most important thing about any quarterback is it's all about winning," Rodgers said. "It comes down to winning games and winning championships. The fact that [Wilson] has won more games [32] than any starting quarterback in the history of the league in his first three years, I think speaks for itself. That's not an opinion. That's a fact.

"They've won an awful lot of games with him as the starting quarterback. I am not of the mindset that some people are that you could put any quarterback in the league as the starter for the Seahawks and they would have played in the Super Bowl the last two seasons."

Rodgers said he would not negotiate on the radio, but he did list Wilson's assets as a player.

"This is an offense that caters to his unique skills," Rodgers said. "He, obviously, is wonderful at improvisation and throwing out of the pocket. His rushing yards speak for themselves. He gives the team the ability to run the read-option. He does exactly what he is expected to do to keep the team playing at the highest level. He takes care of the football and puts the ball in the end zone."

Rodgers was asked about the next step in the negotiations process.

"There is no one next step,'' he said. "The next thing that will happen is Matt Thomas and I will have a conversation soon and talk about where we're at, where we might be going and how we're going to get there. Ideally, we are introducing new information. Sometimes it's a new contract, sometimes it's a new thought and sometimes it's a new proposal.

"I promise everybody, including my client, I'm going to see this through and get us to the point where [Wilson] can make a decision whether something is good or bad or whether they are going to do something or not do something."

Rodgers said he remains hopeful a contract agreement will get worked out.

"As a Seahawks fans, it's a no-brainer to hope and think Russell Wilson will be a Seahawk for life," Rodgers said. "I tend to be very optimistic. The goal here is at the end of the day is we have successful negotiation with the Seahawks."