Jan 30 (Reuters) - Brief profiles of key Seattle Seahawks players for Sunday's Super Bowl against the Denver Broncos in East Rutherford, New Jersey:
Russell Wilson (quarterback)
Although many considered Wilson too short to be a signal caller in the NFL, no quarterback in the Super Bowl era has won more games (27) in his first two seasons than the 5-foot-11 Wilson, who shares the honor with the Pittsburgh Steelers' Ben Roethlisberger. Strong armed and quick of feet, the third-round draft choice passed for 3,357 yards and 26 touchdowns and rushed for 539 more yards and a touchdown during the regular season as he outwitted defenses with his scrambling ability.
Marshawn Lynch (running back)
The Seahawks' workhorse is the only NFL player to rush for over 1,000 yards and more than 10 touchdowns in each of the past three seasons. The four-time Pro Bowl selection had 1,257 yards and 12 TDs rushing (and two more receiving) during the regular season as he lived up to his "Beast Mode" nickname.
Golden Tate (wide receiver)
Seattle's leading receiver during the regular season, Tate hauled in 64 passes for 898 yards and five touchdowns. The 2010 second round draft pick has been scoreless in the postseason but remains a highly effective receiver.
Doug Baldwin (wide receiver)
The undrafted free agent has become an important target for the Seahawks, especially in the postseason, where he leads the team with eight catches to go with the 50 he had during the regular season. "He's really a clutch performer, and he's just had so many significant plays in difficult situations," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said.
Richard Sherman (cornerback)
The self-style leader of the Seahawks' "Legion of Boom" defense made headlines with his postgame outburst after the NFC championship game, but the Stanford graduate has attracted plenty of attention with his on-the-field play too and will be a key to Seattle stopping Denver and its relentless passing attack. The two-time Pro Bowl selection, only a fifth-round draft pick, led the league in interceptions with eight, returning one for a touchdown, and made a game-saving deflection in the NFC title game.
Bobby Wagner (linebacker)
The hard-hitting member of Seattle's top-ranked defense wants another shot at Denver quarterback Peyton Manning. Wagner, who had 120 total tackles and five sacks for the Seahawks in the regular season, delivered what Manning called one of the toughest hits of his career during Seattle's 40-10 preseason win in August. "I wanted him to feel me, let him know that Bobby Wagner's on the field," Wagner said this week. "If I do it in the Super Bowl, a lot of people, all across the world, will remember."
Earl Thomas (safety)
A three-time Pro Bowl selection, Thomas has developed into one of the top safeties in the league, making a team-high 78 solo tackles to go with five interceptions. With his top-end speed and wide range, he has been described as the fulcrum on which Seattle's pressuring defense rests. (Compiled by Gene Cherry; Editing by Frank Pingue)