Former NFL, USC RB Joe McKnight fatally shot near hometown

21 September 2014: Kansas City Chiefs Running Back Joe McKnight (22) [9435] scores against the Miami Dolphins in the Chief's 34-15 victory at Sun Life Stadium, Miami, Florida.
Richard Lewis/Icon Sportswire

Former NFL running back and USC Trojans’ standout Joe McKnight was shot and killed in Terrytown, Louisiana on Thursday afternoon. Family members at the scene identified the victim as McKnight, who in addition to being a former running back for the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs, was also a local high school football standout.

According to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, he was shot and left for dead after an argument ensued at a major intersection of Terrytown. The shooting was reported at 3 p.m. local time.

A witness, who declined to give her name, said she was leaving a store close by when she saw a man at the intersection yelling at another man, who was trying to apologize. She told police that the man who was yelling shot the other man more than once.

She said the shooter shot the man, stood over him and said “I told you don’t you [expletive] with me.” Then he fired again, she said according to The Times-Picayune.

McKnight spent four seasons on an active NFL roster from 2010 to 2012 and then again in 2014. Coming out of John Curtis Christian High School in River Ridge, Louisiana , he was considered one of the best running back prospects 10 years ago. He played his collegiate football for USC and in his junior season, he rushed for 1,014 yards, averaging 6.2 yards per carry, and scored eight touchdowns.

The Jets selected him in the fourth-round during the 2010 NFL draft. He rushed for 502 yards on 112 carries across 39 games with New York. It was a small sample size, but he averaged an even six yards per carry on 30 rushes in 2012.

After a year away from football, he played two games with the Chiefs in 2014. McKnight had just one rush for three yards, but he also caught six passes, including two touchdowns.

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