T. J. Duckett
No. 45, 36, 42
|Date of birth:February 17, 1981|
|Place of birth: Kalamazoo, Michigan|
|High school: Kalamazoo (MI) Loy Norrix|
|College: Michigan State|
|NFL Draft: 2002 / Round: 1 / Pick: 18|
|Debuted in 2002 for the Atlanta Falcons|
|Last played in 2008 for the Seattle Seahawks|
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Todd Jeffery "T. J." Duckett (born February 17, 1981) is a former American football running back in the National Football League. He was drafted by the Atlanta Falcons 18th overall in the 2002 NFL Draft. He played college football at Michigan State.
Duckett was a consensus prep All-America at Loy Norrix High School in Kalamazoo, Michigan, where, as a senior, he was named Parade Magazine and Rivalnet National Player of the Year. In addition to running back, he played linebacker and quarterback. As a junior, he had 140 tackles, three sacks and two interceptions and accounted for 2,080 total yards and 20 touchdowns on offense. He was named Defensive Player of the Year by Prepstar, SuperPrep and Rivalnet. As a senior, also, he rushed for 1,623 yards (11.2 avg.) and had 21 touchdowns. On defense, he recorded 102 tackles, nine sacks, and four forced fumbles. As a quarterback, he threw for 920 yards and nine touchdowns.
He was the 1997 Rivals High School Junior of the Year.
Duckett also participated in track and field, where he was a Three-time state Class-A shot put champion. He holds the state record in the shot put at 64-7 in track and field. He was also a member of the 400m relay team with a personal-best time of 10.6 in the 100m.
Though he was the top prep linebacker in the nation, Duckett was the lead running back for the Michigan State University Spartans in 1999-2001. He turned down offers from every college football program in the nation after Nick Saban promised him a shot at running back. In Michigan State's victory over Michigan in 2001 he caught a touchdown pass from Jeff Smoker as time expired to upset the Michigan Wolverines 26-24.
As a junior, he earned second-team All-Big Ten Conference honors with 1,353 yards rushing on 240 carries (5.6 avg.) and seven touchdowns. He ran for more than 100 yards six times, including a career-high of 248 yards in a game against Iowa. As a senior, he started every game,leading the team with 263 carries for 1,420 yards (5.4 avg.) and 12 scores. His 263 attempts rank eighth on the school's season-record list, while his 1,420 yards rank fourth.
Duckett's totals at MSU were 621 carries for 3,379 yards (5.4 avg.) and 29 touchdowns, 22 receptions for 151 yards with one score. His 621 rushing attempts rank seventh on the Spartans' career-record chart. Duckett became the fifth all-time leading rusher for MSU, falling short of his brother Tico's 4,212 yards (#3 all time at MSU). His 29 touchdowns are sixth best in MSU history.
The Atlanta Falcons drafted Duckett in the first round of the 2002 NFL Draft with the 18th pick overall. He played as part of the Atlanta Falcons "DVD" (Dunn, Vick, Duckett) rushing offense in 2003-2005. Weighing more than 250 pounds, he was a "muscle" alternative to the 180-pound Dunn.
In 2002 he played in 12 games (starting in three) and rushed 130 times for 507 yards with four touchdowns.
In 2003, He started ten of 16 games and led the team with career-highs of 779 yards on 197 attempts and 11 touchdowns, in addition to 11 catches for 94 yards. He became the fourth Falcon ever with at least ten rushing scores in a single-season. His 11 rushing touchdowns that year rank as the third-highest single-season total in team history.
In 2004, Duckett played in 13 games and totaled 509 yards on 104 carries (4.9 avg.) with eight rushing touchdowns. Duckett's most notable moment in the 2004 season came in a Divisional Playoff game against the Rams, where had a touchdown in the 4th quarter, sealing the decisive victory for the Falcons.
In 2005, He played in 14 games and had 380 rushing yards on 121 carries with eight touchdowns. He also had six receptions for 63 yards and two kickoff returns for 36 yards.
Duckett was traded from the Falcons to the Redskins as part of a three-team deal on August 23, 2006, involving the Denver Broncos. The Redskins traded a draft pick to the Broncos, the Broncos traded wide receiver Ashley Lelie to the Falcons, and the Redskins received Duckett from the Falcons. He signed a two-year, $1.363 million contract with the last year voidable.
In 2006, he played in ten games, finishing with a career-low 38 rushes for 132 yards, two touchdowns and two receptions for 16 yards.
On March 9, 2007 he signed with the Lions. In Detroit, Duckett teamed up with Tatum Bell and Kevin Jones in a multiple back rotation. In 2007, Duckett had 65 attempts for 335 yards (5.2 avg.) with four rushing touchdowns.
On December 23, 2007 against the Kansas City Chiefs, Duckett carried the ball 15 times for a career-high 102 yards (6.8 avg.) and a touchdown.
On March 4, 2008, the Seattle Seahawks signed Duckett to a five-year contract worth $14 million. He served as a short-yardage back for the Seahawks. Duckett scored a touchdown on a one-yard run on September 14, 2008. Before the game, his number was changed from 45 to 42. On September 20, 2008, Duckett scored twice on 19 carries for 79 yards. At the end of the 2008 season, Duckett had 172 rushing yards and a team high eight rushing touchdowns.
During the offseason between the 2008 and 2009 seasons, Duckett again changed his number, this time to 44. Despite reports that he would have an increased role in 2009, he was released prior to the regular season on August 25 after the team signed running back Edgerrin James.
T. J.'s brother Tico Duckett was also a standout running back at Michigan State from 1989 until 1992. Tico was the co-Big Ten offensive player of the year in 1990 and played briefly with the Washington Redskins.
Every year, T. J. used participate in the annual St. "Bald-ricks" Children’s Cancer Fundraiser. For this, he grew his beard out the whole season and had it shaved off for the event in order to raise money for childhood cancer research.
T. J.'s mother died from cancer in 2000 and he has a tattoo of her on his upper right forearm and has her signature on his triceps.
T.J. has recently started New World Flood, a non-profit organization that goes into schools and teaches kids how they can start a flood of community service and kind acts in their school, town, city, and world.
In 2012 he started a nonprofit printing company for T shirts and other clothing items.