By Todd Dybas The News Tribune
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Pedestrian? Appetizers? Not at the Super Bowl.
Doug Baldwin and Jermaine Kearse had big nights during the season’s biggest game, helping them shed the title of overlooked or underrated.
Baldwin’s five catches for 66 yards and a touchdown led the Seahawks. Kearse was right behind him with four catches for 65 yards and a score of his own.
Prior to the game, the Seahawks receivers had often been derided. ESPN analyst Chris Carter referred to them as the “appetizers” and called Baldwin “pedestrian.” Carter also said if Baldwin needed more information on his accomplishments, to Google him.
Baldwin was stern and specific after the game when referencing Carter’s comments.
“I’m not going to say the name, but he knows who he is,” Baldwin said. “I respect what you did on the field. But, stick to playing football because your analytical skills ain’t up to par yet. We need to slow down and go back and not do it half-assed. Put some effort into it.”
Baldwin took Carter up on his directive to search out information about him.
“I didn’t see any Super Bowl appearances,” Baldwin said. “I also saw two losses in the conference championships. So, I have a Super Bowl ring and I would gladly show that to him. If he doesn’t have time to come see it, tell him he can Google it.”
Kearse was a bit more diplomatic.
He, too, feels the receivers are overlooked. Kearse was undrafted out of the University of Washington and has progressively moved up since signing with the Seahawks in 2012.
Kearse’s 35-yard touchdown catch on fourth-and-7 in the NFC title game helped seal the Seahawks’ visit to the Super Bowl. His 23-yard touchdown catch in the third quarter of the Super Bowl helped the Seahawks continue their drubbing of the Broncos, putting them up 36-0 at the time.
“The receiving group, we don’t get enough credit,” Kearse said. “We battle every day, going against the top defense in the NFL every day. We make plays when we need to make them.”