DK Metcalf stunned football fans with a ridiculously impressive chase-down tackle Sunday night.
The second-year Seattle Seahawks wide receiver reached 22.64 miles per hour while covering 114.8 yards to prevent a full-field pick six from Arizona Cardinals safety Budda Baker.
Here's how the standout play unfolded.
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf put out one of the most impressive plays of the NFL season Sunday night, and he never even touched the ball.
The 6-foot-4, 229-pound star had football fans clamoring after his ridiculously impressive chase-down tackle against the Arizona Cardinals Sunday night. Metcalf reached 22.64 miles per hour and covered 114.8 yards to prevent a full-field pick-six from Cardinals safety Budda Baker. It marked the second-fastest speed reached during a tackle this entire season.
Seattle's second-year offensive weapon earned praise from across the sports world — and from Baker himself — for the uber-athletic defensive feat. Here's how the incredible play unfolded:
It all began with a turnover in the red zone
On first and goal, Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson threw a short pass to running back Chris Carson, but Baker read the play beautifully and stepped in front of Carson for the interception around the one-yard line near the right sideline.
Metcalf, meanwhile, started the play on the left flank.
The 22-year-old ran a dig route, cutting to the center of the field a few yards from the line of scrimmage on the play.
He was just outside the endzone closer to the center of the field when Baker picked Wilson off.
Baker was off to the races, and so was Metcalf.
As soon as he had recognized what transpired, Metcalf planted his left foot and pivoted upfield to create near-instant separation from his defender, Arizona cornerback Patrick Peterson.
Metcalf reached the 10-yard line in a flash, leaving Peterson — his original defender — in the dust and falling in step with Cardinals outside linebacker Hassan Reddick. Reddick, who wears No. 43, began the play roughly five yards ahead of Metcalf and could be seen pointing upfield as the interception first occurred.
Ten yards later, Metcalf was well ahead of Reddick and fewer than five yards downfield from Baker himself.
An Arizona player who had tried to tackle Wilson earlier in the play doubled back in an attempt to slow Metcalf down.
Needless to say, it didn't work.
Even as he made up ground on all of the Cardinals and his own teammates, Metcalf still had lateral ground to cover.
According to the NFL rule book, the numbers indicating yard lines must be placed "beginning 12 yards in from each sideline." With Baker approximately two yards removed from the sideline and Metcalf roughly the same distance outside of the numbers, the wide receiver still had about eight lateral yards and another 10.5 feet left to gain on Baker as he carried the ball across the 30-yard line.
Another 10 yards upfield, Metcalf had caught up with his quarterback and shaved off some lateral distance from Baker, who continued to streak down the sideline.
By the time Metcalf crossed midfield, he had a multi-yard advantage on Wilson and was just three yards back from Baker.
Just a few yards upfield, Metcalf reached his maximum speed of 22.64 miles per hour, per The Checkdown and NextGenStats, making it the second-fastest speed on a tackle this season.
Metcalf crossed the 40-yard line just a few feet behind and wide of Baker.
Even though the astoundingly athletic 2019 second-round draft pick was on Baker's tail, some of the Arizona players along the sideline began celebrating early.
Metcalf saw to it that those celebrations were premature. Remarkably, he crossed the 30 just a stride back from Baker.
Just after he crossed the 25-yard line, Baker made the mistake of peeking over his shoulder.
Baker played with the idea of throwing a stiff arm Metcalf's way, but with six inches and 35 pounds between them, the smaller of the two thought better of it.
Metcalf was within striking distance inside the 20, and once he crossed the 15-yard line, he pounced.
Metcalf laid out, wrapped his arms around Baker's waist, and pulled him to the turf just before the five-yard line.
And as Baker popped up to celebrate with his teammates, Metcalf appeared unimpressed with his own efforts.
Not only did Metcalf single-handedly prevent a full-field pick-six, but he also prevented his team from giving up an early lead.
The Seattle defense took the field and held the Cardinals scoreless on the ensuing possession. Without Metcalf's impressive hustle and astounding athleticism, the Seahawks would have fallen behind by a point. Instead, they were able to hold a 20-14 lead as they headed into the locker room for halftime.
And even though Arizona eventually earned the 37-34 home win in overtime, it's safe to say the game wouldn't have been nearly as close down the stretch if not for Metcalf's Herculean efforts on the play. Check out a video of Metcalf's full-field chase down below:
—NFL (@NFL) October 26, 2020
Seattle is now 5-1 on the season and holds a razor-thin lead over the Cardinals in a particularly competitive NFC West. Metcalf and company will head back to the Emerald City to host the San Francisco 49ers next week. Still, they'll have a shot at revenge against Arizona just two weeks after that, as the Seahawks welcome Kyler Murray's squad to CenturyLink Field in what could be a battle for the division on November 19.
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