RENTON, Wash. (AP) — Wide receiver Tyler Lockett is back to full strength and producing more than ever for the Seattle Seahawks.
Another year removed from the broken leg that ended his 2016 season, Lockett again looks like the explosive threat he was in his first two years in Seattle. Lockett has already matched his career-high in touchdowns in just seven games played this season.
“He’s been a big factor early in the year,” head coach Pete Carroll said.
He caught six touchdowns as a rookie in 2015 but had managed just three over the last two seasons combined. He’s on pace to set career highs in catches, yards, yards per reception and touchdowns through the first seven games of 2018.
“He’s really at his top speed right now and rolling, which his top speed is pretty fast,” quarterback Russell Wilson said.
Even though Lockett played in all 16 games for Seattle last year, he never got back to 100 percent. He said he struggled to make it through practices last year.
“It’s hard to get somebody an opportunity who can barely make it through practice,” Lockett said. “Even though I was finding ways and still looked like myself and (could) run around in the games, it was just harder to be able to put myself in a position to help the team in an expanded role.”
But even though Lockett has caught a touchdown in all but one game for the Seahawks this season, he quickly shot down any notion that it’s a significant achievement to him.
“Nothing,” Lockett said. “I just go out there and play and have fun with my teammates and try to make the best out of every opportunity. You never know when you’re going to get the ball or the ball is going to be thrown your way.”
While it may not mean anything to Lockett, it has meant a great deal to the team.
With Doug Baldwin a bit slowed this year due to a pair of knee injuries, Lockett has helped carry the scoring output for Seattle. His six receiving touchdowns are among the best in the NFL. Antonio Brown (8), Tyreek Hill (7) and Eric Ebron (7) are the only players with more receiving touchdowns, though Hill and Ebron have each played one more game than Lockett.
“He’s come through so many challenges,” Baldwin said. “That injury he had a couple years ago, that wasn’t a little injury. That was a very significant injury when it happened. I was on the field and saw it and it was heartbreaking. … You don’t know how people respond to that. If they have the mental fortitude to come back from something that significant. Tyler has done a miraculous job to say the least.”
Notes: RB Chris Carson (hip), LB K.J. Wright (knee) and SS Bradley McDougald (knee) are all questionable to play against the Chargers on Sunday. Carroll said Wright and McDougald should be good to go while Carson will be a game-time decision. … CB Neiko Thorpe (groin) and G Jordan Simmons (calf) are doubtful.
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