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SALT LAKE CITY — While many gear up for the actual Super Bowl, where the two best teams this season will matchup, others gear up for the great commercials highlighted during one of the greatest sporting events.
There will be commercials that elicit several kinds of emotions — humor, excitement, anticipation, joy — but for one, the commercial is just a short means to tell a tremendous story.
Iconic battery company, Duracell, released its commercial early on YouTube, and it's worth watching for the story it tells of Seattle Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman, a 23-year-old deaf athlete — the first legally deaf athlete in the NFL.
At a young age, Coleman was diagnosed with an incurable hearing impairment that left him wearing hearing aids throughout his life.
They didn't call my name, told me it was over. But I've been deaf since I was 3, so I didn't listen. And now I'm here, with a lot of fans in the NFL cheering me on, and I can hear them all.
"They told me it couldn't be done, that I was a lost cause. I was picked on and picked last," Coleman says in the commercial. "Coaches didn't know how to talk to me. They gave up on me, told me I should just quit."
To play football, Coleman had to read lips and to watch the football closely. He played football at Troy High School in Fullerton, Calif., before playing at UCLA — all with the use of hearing aids. He was not drafted to the NFL, but was given the opportunity to be on the Minnesota Vikings' practice squad.
Coleman later joined the Seahawks' practice squad at the end of 2012 and has since stayed with the team.
"They didn't call my name, told me it was over," Coleman says. "But I've been deaf since I was 3, so I didn't listen. And now I'm here, with a lot of fans in the NFL cheering me on, and I can hear them all."
With the Seahawks, Coleman has played in 12 games, starting in three, catching eight passes for 62 yards and a touchdown.
Ultimately, it's not the stats that matter, it's the message Duracell is hoping to convey to its viewers and the message Coleman is hoping young kids realize: "Trust the power within."