Even when Seattle was down 16-0 at halftime, even when the Seahawks were down 19-7 with just over four minutes to go, the game didn’t feel over.
It just didn’t.
And not just because the Seahawks are the defending Super Bowl champions, and not just because they have an inspiring quarterback in Russell Wilson or a player-friendly coach in Pete Carroll.
No, it was because this team simply has a knack for proving people wrong.
“You know, it’s funny,” Fox Sports Seahawks analyst Kevin Burkhardt said on After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “I’ve been around them a lot. I’ve done a lot of their games the last couple years and I’ve gotten to know them – the players, the coaches. I know this: They’re resilient. I didn’t necessarily think they were winning the game. They just looked so bad for such a period of time, and it wasn’t really changing. I thought the defense was playing well, but they just couldn’t get it going offensively.”
Indeed, Wilson played arguably the worst 55 minutes of his career on Sunday, throwing four interceptions against Green Bay in the NFC Championship. No matter. Wilson made plays when his team needed them the most.
During the game, Burkhardt received a text from a friend, who wanted to know just what was wrong with the Seahawks. The friend assumed the game was over.
Burkhardt, however, did not.
“I just can’t count them out yet,” he told his friend. “Even when they were down by 12, you can’t count them out. They have this resiliency. When you’re around Russell Wilson, it’s pretty easy to see where his leadership qualities come from. Because I’ve met with him enough now where you get done and I want to go play for the guy. He has this ability to kind of envision things and just be patient and be confident when the situation presents itself. I just thought watching the game they had to run that zone-read a little bit and have him run a little bit to keep them honest. And what happened is, they got that run game going, and they kind of got back to Seattle football.”
Wilson led the Seahawks on a 69-yard touchdown drive in 1:43, the seven-play march culminating with Wilson running it in from a yard out on a read-option.
Then the onside kick happened.
Four plays and 50 yards later, the Seahawks took a 22-19 lead. The Packers were able to force overtime, but it didn’t matter. Seattle scored on the opening possession with Wilson finding Jermaine Kearse for a 35-yard touchdown pass.
Seahawks win, 28-22.
“Obviously they needed a little bit of a break with the onside kick, but I got to say, I didn’t count them out,” Burkhardt said. “I didn’t think they were going to win. But as soon as they got the onside kick, I had no doubt they were going to win. I mean, that’s kind of the way they’re built. And whether it’s Russell Wilson, whether it’s from Earl Thomas or Richard Sherman playing with their arms hanging off their bodies, that’s really what that team’s about – and I think they showed it in a major way.”