Seahawks safety Tedric Thompson ended a late Rams drive in Thursday night’s 30–29 Seattle win with a truly bonkers defensive highlight. Rams quarterback Jared Goff rifled a ball to receiver Gerald Everett late in the fourth quarter; Everett mishandled Goff’s excellent throw, and the ball deflected away and fell quickly to the turf near midfield. Thompson tumbled in from out of nowhere, a sliding tangle of limbs, and seemed to bat the ball around feebly before the referees blew the play dead. Ho hum, an incomplete pass. But no!
The referees who blew this play dead can be forgiven, just this once, for acting hastily and getting the call wrong. In real time, it was just about impossible to understand how Thompson could’ve kept this ball from touching the field even once, while sliding to the turf, and while the ball seemed to bounce around and change direction too many times. It was only upon further inspection that it became clear that Thompson had worked some sort of extremely boss magic in that split second of hand-eye wizardry, and completed an interception.
The Seahawks failed to run out the clock on their ensuing possession, and then Goff calmly led an efficient drive into field-goal territory with plenty of time left for a game-winning kick, before a really dumb delay of game penalty killed their mojo. Greg Zuerlein missed a 44-yard field goal with 11 seconds left on the clock to preserve Seattle’s win, but the right way to remember this will be that the Rams were on the move with a chance to win, and then Tedric Thompson made the coolest play of his life, and it was over! Everything that came after was falling action, or epilogue.