Up 28-14 with less than three minutes remaining, the Seattle Seahawks were forced into a punting situation from their own end zone. If the Detroit Lions had a miracle in them, it would have involved either blocking the punt, returning it for a touchdown, or at least setting up great field position to score quick and maybe get one more opportunity to tie it up. No such miracle was coming.
Not for the Lions at least.
Seattle punter Michael Dickson ended up tucking the ball, scrambling in the back of the end zone, and then running forward for a first down, sealing the Seahawks’ victory. A “gutsy” call by Pete Carroll? Not really. It just so happened that the Lions were so unprepared for Dickson to keep the ball that they didn’t defend a potential fake so when the rookie punter saw his opportunity to end the game, he took it.
He was supposed to take a safety.
A safety would have cut the lead to 28-16, but it gives Seattle a much better advantage than if the Lions had scored a touchdown quickly on the punt or following the punt. No safety was necessary though, because Dickson says, “I just had to go for it” when he saw the opening for a first down. Carroll called it, “The Aussie Sweep” but only after the fact, of course.
Michael Dickson tells Jen Mueller he was supposed to run around in the endzone, mile the clock and get out the back...until he saw a 'massive gap' and ran for the first.— Jessamyn McIntyre (@JessamynMcIntyr) October 28, 2018
"I just had to go for it."#Seahawks
Pete Carroll said "the Aussie sweep" was designed for Michael Dickson to take a safety, but "he saw a situation and took advantage of it. That's what great players do." #Seahawks— John Boyle (@johnpboyle) October 28, 2018
I’ve said it to every opponent blog that I’ve Q and A’d this season and most of them think I’m joking, but I’ll say it again: Have you heard of Michael Dickson?
He’s pretty damn good.