Did you start Justin Coleman, J.D. McKissic or Marcus Smith on your fantasy football team Sunday night?
Ever even heard of them before?
They had combined to play 41 snaps the first three games of the season entering the Seattle Seahawks’ runaway 46-18 victory against the Indianapolis Colts. But on prime-time television these castoffs made some of the Seahawks’ biggest plays.
For comparison, Russell Wilson, Bobby Wagner, Richard Sherman — they entered having played 204 snaps each.
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“We just keep fighting because we’re a team and the next man has to step up and get the job done,” said Seahawks safety Kam Chancellor, another one of those 204-snap players. “They just have to bring their efforts to the group.”
McKissic scored the first two touchdowns of his career — on a 30-yard run and an incredible 27-yard catch in double coverage.
He was undrafted and hadn’t played a down entering the game as he saw action with Thomas Rawls (healthy inactive) and C.J. Prosise (ankle) out, and lead running back Chris Carson leaving in the fourth quarter with what coach Pete Carroll said was a significant ankle injury.
How about Coleman? He had his first interception since his senior year at the University of Tennessee in 2014, and he returned it 28 yards for the Seahawks only touchdown of the first half. And he only saw more playing time because Jeremy Lane left in the first quarter with an injury.
And Smith? He’s not such a no-namer, being a former first-round draft pick by the Philadelphia Eagles, but he had played just 31 snaps coming in. He played a bigger role Sunday only because Cliff Avril left in the first half with a neck injury and didn’t return.
His strip sack of Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett led to Wagner’s 21-yard fumble return for a touchdown. It gave the Seahawks a 32-18 lead to kick the floodgates open of what would be a Seahawks franchise record 36 second-half points.
“The tackle had been stepping back the whole game and the whole time I was bull-rushing him,” Smith said. “And I came to the sideline and Mike (Bennett) was like, ‘Just take him high and around.’ So on that one I took him high and around and got the sack.”
Fellow Seahawks cornerback Neiko Thorpe had warned Coleman to have a touchdown celebration ready — because you never know when you’ll need it.
“(Thorpe) asked me, ‘So what are you going to do when you score?’ I was like, ‘I don’t know,’ ” Coleman said. “And he’s like, ‘Watch, we’re going to laugh about it later.’
“And right when it happened he was like, ‘See – I told you.’ ”
Coleman came to the Seahawks via trade from the New England Patriots in exchange for a seventh round draft pick this offseason. He said he only recently was able to finally get all of his stuff moved from New England to Seattle.
And it helped he was going against one of his former Patriots’ teammates in Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett. They spoke to each other before and after the game.
“I know who he likes to throw it to and who he don’t and his best passes,” Coleman said. “I knew he was probably going to throw it toward me at some point.”
And, no, that wasn’t a miniature, faster Eddie Lacy playing running back. That was J.D. McKissic, even if NBC broadcaster Al Michaels at first misidentified him.
“We do both got the dreadlocks,” McKissic said. “So that happens sometimes.”
He was acquired by Seattle in December after being undrafted out of Arkansas State. The 5-foot-10, 195-pound McKissic was filling in for Prosise as a dual-threat running back/pass catcher.
He said he lost his mind after scoring his first touchdown.
“And I forgot to celebrate with the team,” McKissic said. “I wanted to run into the crowd and be with them. It was crazy. It’s something that you dream of.”
During prime time, he, Coleman and Smith were prime-time players.
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