Geno Smith’s Meaningless Thursday Night Football Rush Wins DFS Player $500,000
Steph Chambers/Getty Images. Pictured: Geno Smith (No. 7).
Nationwide weekly fantasy contests have provided us with some amazing stories over the years.
Those who won because a quarterback lost rushing yards by kneeling. Those who lost because a running back slid before the end zone to run out the clock. A dropped pass, a holding call, a missed field goal, when there’s so many people playing, the narrowest event could cause a colossal fall.
On Thursday night, a FanDuel fantasy player had an epic roller-coaster ride, en route to winning $500,000, that was one for the ages.
Entry Emmett85 started rising up the ranks in the single-game contest for the Thursday Night Football matchup between the Los Angeles Rams and Seattle Seahawks, which cost $9 to enter and had 198,412 entries.
Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson hurt his finger in third and the team was forced to go with backup Geno Smith. To differentiate himself, Emmett85 started Smith.
Smith came in the game and led a 98-yard drive that ended with a D.K. Metcalf touchdown. The former Jets and Giants quarterback notched 72 passing yards and six on the ground on that drive. Smith got Emmett85 even more points the next Seattle drive, which ended in a Seahawks field goal. On the second drive, Smith threw for 46 more yards and rushed for another five.
At that point, Emmett85 was in first place in the pool.
With a little more than two minutes to go, Smith threw an interception and Emmett85 was dinged one point, which leads to him falling back to seventh place — a swing from winning $500,000 to $15,000.
Up six points and on the Seahawks 33-yard line, it looked like the Rams could run out the clock. But after only getting three yards in three downs, Los Angeles kicked the field goal that put the game away.
But it wasn’t over for Emmett85, because the Rams left 24 seconds on the clock. He was 1.39 points from first place with one drive remaining.
Smith’s first pass was incomplete, leaving 18 seconds on the clock. Emmett85 needed Smith to gain at least 24 passing yards, which would seemingly be the most realistic way for him to climb the leaderboard with Seattle trailing and in pass-first mode.
But, in an act meaningless to pretty much every person in the world except Emmett85, Smith squeezed in a rush for 12 yards that was worth 1.8 points.
The standings on the left of the image below is what the contest looked like before that final drive. On the right is where it ended.
Emmett85 won the $500,000 — all thanks to Geno Smith.
There was one more play in the game, which saw Smith complete a 13-yard pass to running back Travis Homer. That by itself would not have been enough to win it for Emmett85.
Remarkably, by taking the risk of starting Smith, he’s the only winner, so he doesn’t have to split any of it.
Thanks to Mike Moorby for the background information on this story.