Seattle Seahawks cornerback Jeremy Lane couldn’t have had a better start to the Super Bowl. The New England Patriots were driving and close to a score on the Seahawks' 10-yard line early in the first quarter. The Patriots quarterback Tom Brady threw a wobbly pass under duress from the Seahawks' blitz, and Lane leaped high to intercept the pass to deny New England early points.
That play likely also ended Lane’s Super Bowl. He hurt his wrist and backup Tharold Simon came on to replace him.
Lane made news leading up to the Super Bowl by talking a little trash about Patriots star tight end Rob Gronkowski. Gronkowski is regarded by many as the best tight end in the league and has already caught a touchdown in the Super Bowl.
“I actually don’t think he’s that good,” Lane said to reporters. “He’s OK.”
The third-year Lane is the third-string corner for the Seahawks and often plays the nickel cornerback position. The big interception was the first pick of Lane’s career in 41 games (including playoffs). If Seattle wins the Super Bowl, it may go down as a memorable play in the victory.
Lane was an unheralded college prospect out of small Northwestern State University in Louisiana. The Seahawks selected him in the sixth round of the 2012 draft and he has started just four games since. Many experts believed the Patriots would not challenge star Seattle cornerback Richard Sherman, meaning Lane would have a heavy Super Bowl workload. The interception was a big first-half play, despite the predicted challenge of seeing a lot of passes come his way.
Simon, Lane’s replacement, saw the same sort of heavy workload when he came on as a replacement. The rookie out of LSU was covering Patriots receiver Brandon LaFell when Brady threw to him for the first score of the game and a 7-0 lead.
The first half was back-and-forth affair with New England twice taking a touchdown lead only to have Seattle even the score. Brady threw for 177 yards on 27 attempts, keeping the Seattle secondary busy.
While the Seattle defense has been stellar this season, Lane kept their Super Bowl hopes alive. Had Lane not come down with the interception, the Seahawks could be facing a major uphill battle.