By Brady Henderson
The biggest play Golden Tate made Sunday didn’t come in the open field, where the elusive wide receiver is about as dangerous as anyone.
It came at the bottom of a pile of bodies, where he fought for possession of a loose ball, and as he described it, “held on for my life.”
Marshawn Lynch’s fourth-quarter fumble could have given the Rams the ball in the red zone with a chance to take a late lead, but Tate emerged from the bottom of that pile with the football, extending a Seahawks drive that would end with the go-ahead touchdown.
Golden Tate had a key fumble recovery to go along with a career-high 105 yards receiving in Seattle’s win over St. Louis. (AP)
“Guys are trying to do whatever it takes to get the ball,” Tate said after the Seahawks’ 20-13 win at CenturyLink Field. “In that instance I was OK – I felt like my wrist was about to break if I held onto the ball any longer. It’s just a dog fight in there. You get the ball however you can.”
Tate needed just three catches to finish with a career-high 105 yards. His longest gain came on a third-down reception during that final drive. It looked like Wilson was going to be dropped for a seventh sack, but he narrowly avoided a Rams defender and found Tate, who gained 44 yards and put the Seahawks in St. Louis territory.
“The Rams did a great job of pressuring on that play, and I was trying to get enough time to extend the play,” Wilson said. “I had to get out of the pocket a little bit. Golden Tate did a great job of extending the play and giving me a chance to throw it down field. He came up with a big-time catch. That was a huge, huge first down for us.”
That play was another example of the chemistry Tate and Wilson have developed. This is what it looks like when a quarterback and a receiver are on the same page.
“He broke that tackle and guys thought he was about to run so I turned up field and he made a perfect throw where no one could get it but me,” Tate said.
Seattle took the lead five plays later on Wilson’s 2-yard rushing touchdown.
Tate made key grab to set up the Seahawks’ first touchdown, picking up 31 yards on another third-down play. Tate gained about 10 of those yards after a defender ripped off his right shoe.
His first grab takes the cake as far as degree of difficulty. He went to his knees to catch a low pass, snagging it just before it hit the turf before popping up and racing down the right sideline for a 30-yard gain.
These are the types of flashy plays Tate has made regularly during what has become a breakout season. While he certainly has a flare for the dramatic, you will rarely hear Carroll laud Tate without noting his toughness.
On Sunday, Tate showed both.
“It was very, very important to get that fumble. It was a great dog pile recovery,” Carroll said. “My favorite play of the day was Golden Tate coming up with that football right there.”