Why Not Us?

“I had a feeling we were going anyway.” – How’s that for unwavering belief coming from Russell Wilson when asked about making it to the Super Bowl. His father used to say to him, “Why not you” and he has translated that to “Why not us”. At 5’11” he’s the shortest quarterback. When it came to getting drafted in the NFL he was overlooked by so many teams because of his height except the Seahawks. He’s constantly had to prove all the doubters that he was capable of being a successful NFL quarterback. As an entrepreneur, is that any different as we set out on our journey to launch our startup? Don’t we all have that feeling and belief of “Why not me”? There’s always going to be investors that think you can’t do it, you can’t pull it off. The way I see it, for every Goliath comes a David.

“You have to have amnesia at this position”

As an entrepreneur, you have have to have amnesia too. “No matter how good things are going or how bad things are going, no matter what the circumstances are you just have to play one play at time”. As an entrepreneur we go up and down, many times within the same day. As a leader, you have to forget about some of the big mistakes that happen. After watching the Wilson interview when asked about his first play of fumbling the ball in the NFC Championship game, he said he didn’t even remember it until the press conference after the game. Amazing, the thing to learn there is focus and realizing that the mistake isn’t forever, it’s gone after the next play.

The Separation is in the Preparation

The work ethic that Russell Wilson has borders on maniacal. The no-nonsense approach that extends to every practice, every meeting, every study session. “You have to be a self-motivator in this world,” says Wilson. “That’s the number one thing that I am. I will always be the first one in and the last one to leave because I love the game”. You would never hear Russell Wilson make excuses and say “Sorry, I can’t do that — I have a life”. You think he runs around talking about “work life balance”?! That said, I bet he makes time for what is important to him. If I had to guess what that would be: It’s his faith, family, and winning the Super Bowl.

What I Admire About Russell Wilson

He’s not a tall guy for NFL quarterback standards. He’s humble. He expresses gratitude. His work ethic is unmatched. He knows he has to work harder than everyone else and he knows it’s going to pay off. His faith. You listen to him and he’s completely transparent about his faith and he’s a strong witness for Christ. Being in the spotlight and public eye he’s not afraid to talk about his faith as can be read in this article “Seattle Seahawks: Jesus more important than the Super Bowl“. That said, his goal is still to win the Super Bowl. He’s a leader. #GoHawks

You can view his interview after the NFC Championship game on the Seahawks Website.

ShermanDisclaimer: I’m not a sports-blogger.  But I couldn’t resist writing up something – along with the rest of the world – on Richard Sherman’s behavior and post-game interview with Erin Andrews.  If you haven’t seen it, click here.

Fans around the world are divided – they have commented that Sherman should have had more class, they are disappointed, and have described his behavior as embarrassing and arrogant.  To which the “offender” himself responded: “To those who would call me a thug or worse because I show passion on a football field—don’t judge a person’s character by what they do between the lines. Judge a man by what he does off the field, what he does for his community, what he does for his family” (source).

Erin Andrews responded by saying she was glad Sherman lost his mind:
“You expect these guys to play like maniacs and animals for 60 minutes,” she said. “And then 90 seconds after he makes a career-defining, game-changing play, I’m gonna be mad because he’s not giving me a cliché answer, ‘That’s what Seahawks football is all about and that’s what we came to do and we practice for those situations.’ No you don’t. That was awesome. That was so awesome. And I loved it” (source).

Even though no one is asking for my opinion (because like I said before, I am no sports blogger), here’s how I’ve made sense of Sherman’s flamboyant and controversial behavior.  I’m just a fan, but I’ve been known to have an occasional outburst while I’m watching a game.  And my outbursts are acceptable (by most of my friends and family) because we understand that we all get caught up in the moment during big plays.  But my intensity no where near matches the passion and adrenaline that goes along with being a playmaker like Sherman, and being in the moment and on the field.

If Richard Sherman was grabbed out of the end zone by Kam Chancellor instead of Erin Andrews, there is no doubt in my mind that he would have said the exact same thing to him.

The tipping point is this: Sherman consistently backs up his statement.  He believes he is the best cornerback in the game today (and so does Deion Sanders, and me, and many others), and his belief promotes his behavior.  He plays as if he’s the best.  And this past Sunday, his belief-promoting-behavior caused him to make the best play in Seahawk history.  Just typing that statement gets me pumped up enough to have an outburst.  #gohawks





Over two years ago on 11.11.11 the Seattle community surrounded Nick and Alyssa Magnotti as Nick battled a rare form of cancer. We have all have loved, hoped, cared and prayed for Nick and Alyssa along this journey. This morning Nick passed away.

In the spirit of our desire to wrap our arms around Alyssa and Austyn in this most challenging time, please consider this alternative to sending a sympathy card:

Take a piece of blank paper. Trace one hand. Write a note. Tell her this represents a giant hug from you. Have your spouse, family do the same, if appropriate.

Mail to:
Alyssa Magnotti
c/o Thinkspace
8201 164th Ave NE, Suite 200
Redmond, WA 98052

(If you have her direct home address you can mail it there, otherwise, we will forward all mail to her)

Our goal is to immediately fill her mail box with hugs from those of us that walked this journey. The sooner, the better.

If you would like to express support in lieu of flowers, perhaps consider donating to Austyn’s (8 mo.) college education. You can make a donation through this website: http://teammagnotti.org/

Bless each of you,