Seahawks receiver DK Metcalf’s rookie season is remarkable for more reasons than just his play on the field. While at Ole Miss, Metcalf was told he would no longer be able to play football again after sustaining a neck injury and calls his ability to be an NFL player a “miracle,” per The News Tribune’s Gregg Bell.
“DK Metcalf was told by a doctor last October after a cervical fracture in his neck at Ole Miss he should never play football again. ‘I cried,’ he said today. Now he’s an NFL-record setting rookie on #Seahawks playoffs. He calls it ‘a miracle.’ More this week in @thenewstribune,” Bell tweeted.
A little more than one year later, and Metcalf is making game-sealing catches in the NFL playoffs. Former Ole Miss head coach Matt Luke described Metcalf’s injury as “more serious than we thought” when the team announced the receiver would be out for the remainder of the season in October of 2018.
“D.K. Metcalf hurt his neck,” Luke noted, per 247Sports. “It’s a little more serious than we thought. He’ll be done for the season. Long term, he’s going to be fine. But I think it’s going to require surgery. We’re still looking to make sure that we have the very best care and everything for him. But it’s not a long-term issue. But it is going to be one where he’ll be done for the season. It has nothing to do with the spinal. It’s all vertebrae. It happened right away. Initially, thought it was just a whiplash kind of thing. We got back and did the MRI and everything and it came back late last night.”
Metcalf Fell to the 2nd Round of the 2019 NFL Draft
Metcalf would not end up playing another down of college football as he later declared for the NFL draft. Despite the serious injury just a few months prior, Metcalf was able to destroy the NFL Combine with the exception of the famed three-cone drill.
Some teams worried about Metcalf’s ability to get in and out of breaks given his size. The skepticism worked in the Seahawks favor as they were able to snag Metcalf in the second round.
“It’s great. I think falling to the second round was the best thing that happened to me because I’ve got the chip on my shoulder every time I play,” Metcalf noted, per Pro Football Talk.
Seahawks Head Coach Pete Carroll Noted Metcalf Begs to Play Special Teams
Metcalf’s medical scare could explain why the receiver is eager to contribute in any way possible. Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll noted that Metcalf begs to be on special teams.
“He wants to be on special teams,” Carroll noted, per USA Today. “He wants to rush the punter. He’s tapping us on the shoulder all the time, what more can I do? He really does take pride in all aspects of it. Part of it is he knows that he’s capable. He knows he can help.”