EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) - Percy Harvin juked a few defenders, blazed down the sideline and made it to the end zone.
That’s the dazzling playmaker the Seattle Seahawks had been waiting all season to see.
That’s the guy Harvin and his teammates knew he still was.
“It’s just a big horse off my back,” a smiling Harvin said. “I finally was able to give my team something for four quarters.”
It certainly had been a while for Harvin, who missed most of his first season with Seattle dealing with a hip injury, and then suffered a concussion in the playoffs. But Harvin made it - finally - through his first full game, and made up for some lost time.
“It means everything to me,” he said. “This team, the way they stood behind me, the way they backed me up all year, it means a lot to me.”
“I knew Percy was going to have a big game tonight,” quarterback Russell Wilson said. “You look at him and he’s one of the best football players to play in the National Football League for four years.”
Oh, and there was also that pretty kickoff return to open the second half, an 87-yarder on which it appeared he initially struggled to field before taking off and giving Seattle a 29-0 lead 12 seconds into the third quarter.
“We were hyped up, saying we were going to come out and get a stop, ‘Let’s get a three-and-out,’ and then they’re like, ‘Boom!’” Broncos defensive end Shaun Phillips said. “We got kicked in the chin.”
The Seahawks had been practicing the return all week - a “special” one, Harvin said - but hadn’t used it in a game all season. His blockers cleared the right side of the field, and Harvin found the gap and just kept running.
“The guys told me I was going to score,” said Harvin, who also had a 5-yard reception in the game. “I wasn’t just saying it to say it. Those guys believed that I was going to get in the end zone. When I broke through and I saw the end zone, I really couldn’t believe it.”
“Don’t kick it to him, come on,” wide receiver Golden Tate said. “He is a special guy.”