That was great. Really helps with the late career image of him. Too bad the punt return was called back, and the late kickoff return didn't go the distance. I've been hoping for Hester to add at least one more touchdown return. He's had bad luck with penalties wiping out return touchdowns several times.
Hester has limited repertoire these days. On kickoff returns he almost always uses the same move...starting straight then weaving toward the opposite sideline, the wide side of the field, before pivoting and angling sharply upfield. He hopes the perimeter defenders at about the 15 to 25 yard line commit too far outside so he can dart inside them to create a huge play. I can't remember the last time he used something other than that move. It's a version of what he used on the famous kickoff return to open the Super Bowl vs. the Colts. His punt returns vary slightly more. Nice spin move to begin the one that was called back.
It was shocking the Falcons, his former team, weren't prepared for that move. But I think Hester had special motivation for them. This was more energy than he's had in at least two years. I assumed the departure from Atlanta must have been friendly enough but apparently not. Notice that after Hester's kickoff return to the 45 early in the game he exchanged brief tense words with Matt Ryan on the bench. Hester tried to slow his momentum out of bounds and inadvertently shoved a Falcons assistant siting on the bench. It was no big deal but apparently Ryan took offense to it, based on the facial expressions during the exchange between Ryan and Hester.
It's great that Hester is ending his career with a turf team, as opposed to grass. He needs the extra bounce these days. I hope he plays a full season with Seattle next year.
The Falcons are finally a legit playoff threat, as I posted last week. Led the league in YPPA Differential at +2.0.