SEATTLE, Wash. — Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Paul Richardson made the play of the game against the San Francisco 49ers without one of his fingers at full strength.
Battling through a dislocated ring finger, Richardson's leaping nine-yard touchdown grab along the sideline gave the Seahawks the go-ahead touchdown in Seattle's 12-9 win in the home opener against the 49ers. His touchdown capped a 10-play, 82-yard drive that was led by Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson with Seattle trailing 9-3 in the fourth quarter.
"It's good, I was able to get through the game," Richardson said when asked about his finger. "They were able to sew it up and I was able to get through."
Wilson ran four times on the game-winning drive for 27 yards before maneuvering around the pocket and throwing the strike to Richardson. It was the only touchdown of the game.
"When Russell started scrambling, the defensive back at first tried to push me out of bounds," Richardson said. "Then I fake one way and came out. Russell kept running because that's what he does pretty well in that scramble offense and we were able to put points up on the board."
Richardson, who caught two passes for 19 yards against the 49ers, said he suffered the injury on the Seahawks' first or second offensive drive. He left to the locker room after it happened to get it popped back in before having trainers sew it together. Richardson said the ball skipped up off the ground and hit the finger on a pass that was intended for him.
"To be a receiver and have your fingers sewed up and to battle and to come back in, that shows his courage," Wilson said. "There are so many guys like that, constantly, consistently, on our football team but that was a great example of that tonight."
The Seahawks didn't have the best game offensively against the 49ers. Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin later described their performance as “ugly as hell,” in fact. But much like Richardson playing through his injury, Seattle remained resilient and came through late when they needed to the most.
"We always talk about, it doesn't matter how you start, it doesn't matter how it looks, as long as you get the job done," Baldwin said. "And fortunately enough, Paul Richardson — I can't say enough about him. He dislocates his finger, it comes out of his skin, he's sitting there bleeding, his bone is out of his skin. He goes in the locker room, sews it up, tapes it up, comes back up and scores the game-winning touchdown. That's the mentality that we have here. I couldn't be more proud of these guys."