Has Metcalf passed Lockett as Seahawks’ go-to WR in crunch time?

Oct 12, 2020, 9:21 AM | Updated: 10:14 am
Seahawks QB Russell Wilson, WR DK Metcaf...
Seahawks QB Russell Wilson looked WR DK Metcalf's way late multiple times in Week 5. (Getty)

With the Seahawks needing big plays to keep the game alive and ultimately take the lead over the Minnesota Vikings in the fourth quarter of Week 5, star quarterback Russell Wilson was looking for one man: DK Metcalf.

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On fourth-and-10 inside the final 90 seconds, Wilson found the second-year receiver deep for a 39-yard gain to give Seattle a new set of downs and put the team in Minnesota territory.

Wilson then found Metcalf to get another first down a few plays later. Then, just 6 yards away from the end zone, Wilson threw it Metcalf’s way on second, third and fourth down, with the latter resulting in the game-winning touchdown and Metcalf’s second score of the day.

Over the last two or three years, it has seemed like when the Seahawks needed a key play to get a first down or score, Wilson was looking for veteran receiver Tyler Lockett. But against the Vikings, it was clear he was looking for the big-bodied receiver from Ole Miss.

Does this mean Metcalf is the new main target when Seattle desperately needs a play late in games? Former Seahawks quarterback and current NFL on FOX color commentator Brock Huard said it depends on the opponent.

“I think it’s a little different. I think a little bit of that is man versus zone,” Huard said Monday morning on 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny and Gallant. “When (Metcalf) gets man situations and true one-on-one (matchups), and when Minnesota was going to bring the house and blitz and pressure (Wilson) – and even if they were playing zone or playing quarters – it still turns into one-on-one situations on the perimeter with the receiver and that (defensive back). And I think whenever those situations arise, you are going to give No. 14 the chance over anybody else. That’s where he separates.”

Metcalf is listed at 6 foot 4 and roughly 230 pounds, and he runs faster than nearly every receiver in the league with 4.33 40-yard dash speed. That makes him a matchup nightmare at times for defensive backs who either can’t contend with his speed or get “outmuscled” by the big wide receiver. Lockett, meanwhile, is smaller and shiftier, which allows him to excel against a different type of defense, Huard said.

“Now if you’re playing a zone team, a team that’s just rushing four and giving you windows of opportunity and certainly matchups in the slot that Tyler can destroy and decimate, he’s going to have double-digit catch games this season still,” Huard said. “He’ll have plenty of opportunities … But when it is mano a mano and I’ve got to just have it and I’ve got a one-on-one matchup, DK is going to be the guy because he’s starting to earn it by doing it again and again in the biggest of moments.”

Listen to all Danny and Gallant podcasts at this link.

Follow Brock Huard on Twitter.

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Has Metcalf passed Lockett as Seahawks’ go-to WR in crunch time?