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Hackett: Report of Wilson losing locker room support is 'all gossip'

Grant Halverson / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Denver Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett insisted Wednesday that the locker room remains firmly behind quarterback Russell Wilson despite the team's struggles.

A report from Tom Pelissero of NFL Network on Tuesday suggested Wilson lost the support of some people in the locker room, while faith in Hackett remained strong amid speculation about his future.

"It's all gossip. … We have a fantastic locker room," Hackett said Wednesday, according to team reporter Aric DiLalla. "When you look at a guy like Russ, he's unbelievable. He works - I've never seen somebody work that hard.

"I've never seen somebody try to embrace a team like he has while he's (been) here, just from everything that he does, from walkthroughs to helping to how he is in the community. Russ is awesome. We just need to do better as a team. It's that simple. All of that stuff, it is what it is. I love Russ."

Broncos defensive lineman Mike Purcell made headlines by getting in Wilson's face during last Sunday's 23-10 loss to the Carolina Panthers.

While both players dismissed the incident postgame, the confrontation fueled speculation that the team's confidence in its star signal-caller is eroding.

Following its blockbuster trade to acquire Wilson from the Seattle Seahawks, Denver was a popular preseason pick to make the playoffs for the first time since winning Super Bowl 50 during the 2015 season.

But the Broncos' offense has been historically poor through 12 weeks of the campaign, recording an NFL-worst 14.3 points per game.

Wilson, in particular, has failed to play up to his usual standards. The nine-time Pro Bowler is 28th in passing touchdowns (eight), 29th in passer rating (82.3), and 31st in completion percentage (58.9).

Wilson signed a five-year, $245-million contract in September.

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