With mandatory minicamps around the NFL wrapped up, focus has completely shifted to the 2021 season. With that, the 2020 campaign is far and away in the rearview mirror, though it won't be easy to forget one of the most challenging and unusual years in sports and the world as a whole.
For the Seahawks, 2020 was a year full of ups and downs. Getting off to the hottest start in franchise history, several players broke team records on the way to their first NFC West title since 2016. But once the playoffs rolled around, disaster struck and Seattle was shockingly eliminated by the Rams in the wild-card round.
Disappointing conclusion aside, there were still plenty of moments for Seahawks fans to fondly look back on. Leading up to the start of training camp in July, we'll be ranking the five best plays of several Seahawks players - both new, old and in between - from the 2020 season.
Today's subject is receiver Tyler Lockett. As DK Metcalf claimed Seattle's single-season franchise record for most receiving yards with 1,303, Lockett broke a record of his own with the first 100-catch season in team history. Racking up 1,054 yards and 10 touchdowns, plenty of those grabs were worthy of landing on this list. But after whittling it down to five specific plays, here's Lockett's greatest hits from 2020.
5. Lockett's 100th catch puts the Seahawks ahead for good
Score: 49ers 16, Seahawks 12
Situation: 4th and goal, ball on 49ers' four-yard line (2:26 - 4Q)
It may not be an acrobatic grab like some of the others on this list, but Lockett's 100th and final catch of the season came in a big way. Despite already having the NFC West locked down heading into their Week 17 matchup, the Seahawks were still playing for the outside chance of snatching the conference's top seed in the playoffs. While the Packers and Saints' respective wins dashed those hopes, they kept their starters in the game with sights set on finishing the season 12-4. Though it was ugly at times for the offense, Russell Wilson orchestrated a signature game-winning drive late in the fourth quarter, capping it off by hitting Lockett on a crossing pattern—something they had done on several occasions in the red zone throughout the course of the season. The 49ers managed to find the end zone again, but not before an Alex Collins rushing touchdown extended Seattle's lead to 10 shortly after Lockett's score.
4. Burning the Cowboys' secondary, Lockett grabs the lead
Score: Cowboys 3, Seahawks 0
Situation: 1st and 10, ball on Cowboys' 43-yard line (6:46 - 1Q)
Due in part to a lingering knee injury, Lockett unfortunately didn't take the top off opposing defenses too often in 2020. But before it became an issue, he made sure to set the grass beneath his feet ablaze. Blowing past the Cowboys' secondary early on this Week 3 bout, Lockett created a good five yards worth of separation from the closest white jersey when a moonball from Wilson perfectly dropped into his bread basket. It proved to be just his first of three scores in the first half of the Seahawks' eventual 38-31 win, which wouldn't be the only time in the season he'd go for the hat trick.
3. Shining in the Sunday night spotlight, Lockett dives for second TD
Score: Seahawks 20, Cardinals 14
Situation: 1st and 20, ball on Cardinals' 47-yard line (0:51 - 2Q)
Spoiler alert: you'll be seeing a lot of this game from here on out. In the midst of what was possibly the game of his life, Lockett had Cardinals cornerbacks Patrick Peterson and Dre Kirkpatrick on tilt all night long. With less than a minute left in the first half, the Seahawks looked to hit a home run to extend their six-point lead in the desert. Peterson managed to keep pace with Lockett down the field, but a beautiful ball from Wilson barely scraped by the All-Pro corner's outstretched hand and into the arms of his diving receiver. Impressive for a multitude of reasons, Lockett's unwavered focus despite the suffocating presence of Peterson makes this catch one to remember.
2. Lockett sets the stage for his dominant performance with one-handed grab
Score: Seahawks 0, Cardinals 0
Situation: 1st and 10, ball on Seahawks' 25-yard line (15:00 - 1Q)
Lockett didn't waste any time in previewing what was to come in this Sunday night matchup. On the very first play from scrimmage, Lockett made the first of his franchise record-tying 15 catches in a spectacular fashion. Hand fighting with Peterson all the way downfield, Lockett was only able to get one arm free to reel in yet another perfectly placed ball from Wilson. An incredible 34-yard gain that kicked off a 200-yard, three-score performance.
1. Tyler Toe-Tap comes through in the clutch
Score: Seahawks 27, Cardinals 24
Situation: 4th and 2, ball on Cardinals' three-yard line (6:50 - 4Q)
As mentioned, goal-line crossers were Wilson and Lockett's bread and butter in 2020. Almost a near repeat of his game-winning grab against the 49ers—ironically in the same end zone—it would take quite the acrobatic effort to convert this clutch fourth-down score. Getting the inside edge on Kirkpatrick off the line, Lockett weaved his way through traffic to get free to the left-side corner of the end zone. A fairly late delivery from Wilson tightened the window for success, but after tracking the ball down, Lockett was able to miraculously drag both feet before sliding out of bounds for six. Unfortunately, Lockett's efforts were overshadowed by a defensive implosion and a rough second half by Wilson, leading to a heartbreaking 37-34 loss in overtime.