George Paton on Russell Wilson extension: I feel like it will hold up

The first seven games of the Broncos season has led to criticism of several decisions that General Manager George Paton was part of during the offseason and he spent time on Thursday discussing some of them.

Paton led the search process that resulted in hiring head coach Nathaniel Hackett and he said on Thursday that he supports the head coach “100 percent” despite many gaffes during the team’s 2-5 start. The Hackett hiring was followed by the moves to trade for and extend the contract of quarterback Russell Wilson.

While most agreed in the offseason that the move was an upgrade at quarterback, Wilson has not played well and Paton was asked about the call to add five years and $245 million to Wilson’s pact before seeing the quarterback take any regular season snaps in the Denver offense.

“We wanted to get ahead of the contract cycle,” Paton said, via Mike Klis of KUSA. “We had seen how Russ was in the offseason and training camp and we felt really good about Russ. We feel really good about Russ. We wanted to get ahead of it. We didn’t want a lot of distraction during the season. We feel really good about it. I feel good about that deal. I feel like it will hold up. I feel good about Russ.”

Paton’s future in Denver is tied to Hackett and Wilson, so there’s not much for him to do other than back up the decisions while showing faith that they’ll be proven correct at some point down the road. New owners took over control of the team after those decisions were made, however, and their faith in calls made before they got there will ultimately decide the futures of Paton, Hackett and others in Denver.