TULSA, Okla. — Tyler Lockett is making it a point to bring exposure to his hometown before every game he plays this season.
Lockett, 29, is in his seventh season with the Seattle Seahawks.
He grew up in Tulsa where he immediately picked up where his talented family left off.
His father Kevin and uncle Aaron both played at Booker T. Washington High School, followed by impressive careers at Kansas State and stints in the NFL.
The Lockett family's path through football surprisingly didn't lead to too much trash talk.
"If there was anybody who would talk or say anything it would probably be [my dad],” Lockett says.
“I think the biggest thing was when I like beat his records and stuff, he still got drafted in front of me. He was the person that got drafted the highest so far in the family.”
The Kansas City Chiefs picked Lockett's father in 1997 with the 47th overall pick in the draft. The Seahawks took Lockett with the 69th overall pick in 2015.
His younger brother Sterling is expected to begin his college career at Kansas State next year.
Despite playing football more than 1,500 miles away nowadays, Lockett says he still manages to keep track of the success of his high school.
“The thing about the history of Booker T. Washington and just being there, you always keep track and you always look at a lot of the kids that are coming out, seeing where they’re going, the opportunities that they have," Lockett says.
“It’s just great being able to focus in and see some of the kids that’s there. Some that are there I knew when they were growing up. Like Micah Tease, I knew of him, when you talk about Gentry [Williams] and all the love that he’s getting, all that stuff is amazing. I went to school with some of his siblings."
His former high school is one of the multiple shoutouts he's made with his pregame cleats he wears on the field this season.
“The biggest thing is I get to kinda like try to shout out whatever means a lot to me," Lockett says.
"The success of so many people that I’ve seen from growing up or just companies that I’ve seen that have done phenomenal things throughout the course of history in Tulsa.”
In Week 2, he showed some love to Waffle That!, a local restaurant that has grown from a food truck into two brick-and-mortar locations over the last two years.
Lockett went to school in Tulsa with Waffle That! founder Roy Tillis.
"I think it’s just pretty fun being able to give that exposure, and create that exposure, and allow everybody to understand that there’s more in Tulsa and more in Oklahoma than just land," he says.
Lockett will be in Pittsburgh on Sunday night as his Seahawks take on the Steelers, but he isn't eager to give away what his next pair of pregame cleats will look like.
He says the pandemic and other factors make it challenging to get the custom cleats made and delivered on time.
"There’s not really too many teasers that I could give out there, but it’s just something that’s really cool," he says.
"It’s something that I’m starting to realize some people may be looking forward to being able to see, 'What is he going to shout out next?'"
Before Sunday night's game against the Steelers, Lockett debuted a pair of cleats recognizing the North Mabee Boys & Girls Club where he says he started playing football as a kid.
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