After Seattle Seahawks running back J.D. McKissic crossed over Indianapolis defenders en route to the end zone, he immediately ran to sea of fans roaring in the stands. McKissic, who scampered 30 yards on his first carry of the season with the Seahawks, was too caught up in the moment of the play to realize his teammates were behind him ready to celebrate.
"At first I lost it," McKissic said after the game. "I forgot to celebrate with the team. I wanted to run into the crowd and be with them. It was crazy. It's something that you dream of.
"It was crazy. My first run as a Seahawk, I hit it and read the (defensive) end, Tyler (Lockett) had a good block, the receivers blocked downfield, the offensive line did an incredible job and I had the easy job of just hitting and running."
The first carry McKissic took from Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson wouldn't be his last action for the remainder of the night as the second-year player from Arkansas State had a breakout performance against the Colts. McKissic finished the game with 38 yards rushing and later beautifully snagged a 27-yard touchdown between two Indianapolis defenders.
"It felt amazing," McKissic said when asked about the night. "We just came out and executed, we did what we're supposed to do."
"I was kind of thrilled by the way J.D. McKissic jumped on the scene," head coach Pete Carroll said. "This guy has been practicing great for us and we've seen it all along. We've seen nothing but good stuff from him. He's been a great kid. He just hasn't had his shot yet … I was really excited."
McKissic had his shot vs the Colts with C.J. Prosise out because of an ankle injury and Thomas Rawls inactive as a healthy scratch. His versatility is one of the main reasons he was one of five running backs to make the Seahawks' final 53-man roster following training camp. In addition to being a special teams contributor, McKissic has played both running back and wide receiver in the NFL (he officially switched full-time to running back this season).
"Whatever role they have for me, I have to do my best," McKissic said. "Special teams, running the ball, catching the ball, I'm just going to do the best I can."
What's even better about McKissic's performance in primetime is that several players in the Seahawks locker room saw this coming. Doug Baldwin and Richard Sherman said postgame they've been lobbying McKissic's game to Carroll for some time.
"I think he's a ballplayer," Baldwin said afterwards. "That's what he does. He plays football and he's phenomenal at it obviously. We were excited for his success. I wasn't surprised at all."
Added Sherman: "He is a ball player. As old school as it sounds, as rudimentary as it sounds, he is a ball player wherever you put him. I'd put him at right guard and feel comfortable. He is one of those guys that is just a dog and on this team we have always appreciated and celebrated the uniqueness of players like him."
Safety Kam Chancellor said McKissic's performance against Indianapolis gave everyone a spark.
"J.D.'s a little guy with a lot of heart," Chancellor said. "I always tell him about his heart. He plays with a lot of courage, confidence and just seeing him go out there and make plays like he does, when his number is called, it gives us all some juice."
McKissic has a big opportunity in front of him to build off his Week 4 performance going forward. In addition to Prosise's injury, rookie Chris Carson could miss some time with a serious ankle injury. As a multi-purpose threat through the air and on the ground, McKissic's role could increase in the Seahawks' backfield.
The Seahawks come out victorious at CenturyLink Field 46-18 against the Colts.