In the Seattle Seahawks’ locker room Sunday, the only player being asked questions about all three phases of football was Ricardo Lockette:
• Beating top Denver cornerback Aqib Talib, what happened on the 39-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter?
• What happened a few plays earlier when you knocked a potential interception out of Talib’s hands?
• And how about the steamrolling hit he put on receiver Isaiah Burse just after he caught a third-quarter punt?
It was obvious Lockette’s head was in a tizzy as questions came from all corners — many of which he started off answering with a burst of laughter to himself.
The bottom line is that the undrafted free-agent receiver from Fort Valley State, who has been on three NFL rosters since 2011 — and now in his second stint with Seattle — is really developing into an all-around weapon for the Seahawks, who beat Denver, 26-20 in overtime, at CenturyLink Field.
“I’ve told him all season on the sideline, ‘You are an impact player.’ I don’t care if he gets 100 snaps on offense, or 100 snaps on special teams — he does both of them very effectively,” Seahawks receiver Percy Harvin said. “He has a foundation now to build upon.”
In a 3-3 game late in the first half, Lockette cut to the right sideline on an out-route. Talib sensed a pass from Russell Wilson might be coming in that direction, so he undercut the route, and had his hands on the football.
Lockette veered back to knock it out of Talib’s hands for an incomplete pass.
“We just switched roles, and I feel like I made a good play as a (defensive back),” Lockette said.
“L-O-B (Legion of Boom).”
Three players later, Lockette got into a sprint with Talib down the right sideline on a double-go route. Talib tried disrupting the route, but the speedster flew right behind the defensive back.
And in the end zone, Lockette outjumped Talib for the go-ahead touchdown with 3 minutes, 5 seconds left in the first half.
“Once that ball was in the air,” Lockette said, “I had no doubt that is was mine.”
Lockette has bounced around the NFL mainly on the strength of his special-teams play, particularly as a gunner on punt coverage.
Teams have often double-teamed him so he doesn’t reach the punt returner so fast. But Sunday, the Broncos left him in single coverage.
“I go back to my track training,” Lockette said. “It is pretty much that first 20 yards. I just dig, dig and dig — and I look up, and the returner is right there in my face. It is pretty simple.”
Lockette’s role with the Seahawks is growing with each week. His two touchdown catches this season are already a career-high.
So are his unique on-field celebrations.
“I treat (NFL games) like another day at the office,” Lockette said. “So I wipe my sleeves off, fix my tie and I leave the field with a briefcase — just like you’d leave the office.”