Doug Baldwin was open in the end zone, and Russell Wilson spotted the Pro-Bowl receiver and fired, but instead of touchdown Seahawks, it was third-and-12 after the pass sailed over Baldwin and out of the back of the end zone.
Wilson will be the first to tell you that he wasn't at his best early in last week's win over the Green Bay Packers, that errant pass serving as the most obvious example. But one of Wilson's best traits, one that showed up again in a victory that was crucial for the Seahawks' playoff hopes, is the way he can put the negatives behind him and make things happen late in games, regardless of what had happened up to that point.
"Just missed it, you know?" Wilson said of that incomplete pass to Baldwin. "Sometimes you shoot, and you miss. Sometimes it bounces off the rim, but you just keep shooting."
Wilson kept shooting, and after going 3 for 8 for 12 yards in the first quarter, Wilson completed 18 of 23 attempts for 213 yards and two touchdowns over the next three quarters. The Seahawks, meanwhile, turned a 14-3 first-quarter deficit into a 27-24 victory that was just the latest example of the team's resilience.
As Seahawks coach Pete Carroll put it after his team’s win over the Packers, "It's hard to beat us when we just keep battling. Scores, even when we lose games that we think we should have won, they're always close and we've been really good at that for a long time. I think the belief is deep, and that's what sustains you when you keep thinking something good's going to come if you just keep working. We've been preaching that for years and I think it's in the mentality."
And if there's anyone that matches Carroll's optimism, his belief that no matter how badly things might be going at one moment, better times are coming, it's the quarterback who Carroll has coached for the past seven seasons.
"We pretty much see eye to eye on how this is supposed to go and how we want it to go," Carroll said. "The way we see it, we've kind of responded in similar fashion. We've got our own language that we use, but we do see eye to eye and how we need to go about it. It's really been fun for me because it's just a direct conduit to the guys on the field and in the huddle and all of that. Russell's fantastic about his mentality. He's never, ever wavered about how he believes it can go and how he'll keep fighting no matter what just happened. Good or bad, he doesn't care, he can go right back to focus in incredibly consistent fashion. I can't imagine anybody being able to do it any better than that."
Carroll and Wilson's mindsets are so similar, it might seem as if it was something Carroll instilled in a young quarterback several years ago, but in fact it was part of Wilson's nature long before Carroll knew him, something Carroll and general manager John Schneider began figuring out when evaluating Wilson before the 2012 draft.
"Through the process, we had started the introduction to them and the things that we had heard," Carroll said. "I can't remember who told us, but somebody said, 'It might be hard to believe that he's saying what he's saying, but know that he believes what he's saying and he'll make sure that he will convince you that it's true,' which is the truth. It's almost too good to be true at one point when you first hear how committed he is and how important it is to him and how willing he is and all of that. He's never not backed that up."
Ten games into this season, Wilson is on pace to have one of the best years of his career. His 66.2 percent completion percentage trails only the 68.1 percent mark he posted in 2015, his 110.2 passer rating is just ahead of 2015 when he finished with a 110.1 rating, and with 23 touchdowns and five interceptions, Wilson is on pace to break his own franchise record for touchdown passes in a season (34 in 2017 and 2015) while posting a single-digit interception total for the fifth time in eight seasons. Yet as impressive as Wilson has been for most of this season, he knows that at times things won't go his way, and it's the way he responds to those occasional struggles that helps make him one of the game's best quarterbacks. After Thursday's win over Green Bay, Wilson recalled a story Carroll has shared with him about Hall of Fame small forward Rick Barry, who once told Carroll that if he's missing shots, "watch out." In other words, if a good shooter has missed a few, he feels like he's due to get on a roll.
"I just believe that, I know what I'm capable of," Wilson said. "Great things can happen. We have great receivers, guys that can make plays. I missed a couple here and there, but we stayed the course and had a great night."
Duane Brown has only been teammates with Wilson for a year, but already the left tackle knows that, "having a quarterback like Russ, you always feel like you've got a chance."
Sideline photos from the Seahawks' Week 11 game against the Green Bay Packers.