These are the games that make us love football.
In an NFL playoff classic, the heavy underdog Seattle Seahawks shocked the defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints, 41-36.
The game was one of the biggest playoff upsets of all time, and it had everything you could ask for: Back and forth action, a few moments that made you stare in disbelief, and highlight-reel plays worthy of being immortalized by NFL Films.
One of those highlights was, quite simply, among the greatest runs the game of football has ever seen: Late in the fourth quarter, with the Saints seeming to have all the momentum, Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch scored on a 67-yard run that will be remembered as one of the best plays in NFL history, an absolutely preposterous display of speed and power on which most of the Saints defenders got a hand on Lynch but no one could bring him down.
Lynch’s touchdown made the score 41-30 with just three and a half minutes to play. But anyone who had been watching the previous 56 and a half minutes knew that this game still wasn’t over: Drew Brees would, of course, drive the Saints right down the field for a touchdown that made the score 41-36 after the two-point conversion attempt was stuffed.
Unfortunately for New Orleans, the Saints’ onside kick went right into the hands of Seahawks tight end John Carlson (who had previously scored two touchdowns), and the Seahawks just had to run out the clock.
The 7-9 NFC West champion Sehawks were derided as the worst playoff team in NFL history, but they sure didn’t look like it on this January day in Seattle. They’ll be back next weekend to try to pull off another shocker.
And the Saints’ season is over.
UPDATE: Video evidence right here.