Seahawks need to get Rashaad Penny more involved in 2019
After two abysmal seasons incapable of running the football, the Seattle Seahawks made resurrecting their ground attack a priority for 2018. In an effort to do, the Seattle drafted a running back in the first round for only the third time in franchise history when the Seahawks selected Rashaad Penny from San Diego State.
Seattle’s efforts to improve its rushing game were more than successful as no one ran the ball better than the Seahawks all year, although this success was hardly built behind the legs of the rookie Penny.
Second-year pro Chris Carson emerged as the clear lead back by becoming the first Seattle running back to rush for over 1,000 yards since 2014. While Carson is clearly the No. 1 for Seattle and should remain as such, it’s also evident the Seahawks need to find a way to get Penny more involved.
Despite some early season struggles – which is to be expected for a rookie – Penny settled in nicely as the year progressed. Carson and backup Mike Davis had fine campaigns, but Penny proved he is more than capable of being a quality running back in the NFL with very limited touches. On only 85 carries Penny amassed 419 yards and two scores with a yards-per-carry average of 4.9.
Penny’s best game was against the Rams in Los Angeles when he rushed for 108 yards on only 12 carries and his first NFL touchdown. In one game Penny accounted for roughly 25 percent of his offensive output on the ground for 2018. However, it was against the Packers – and against Vikings with a nearly identical play – where he showed off his true potential with his athleticism.
Penny’s value comes from the fact he is a different runner than Carson or Davis. While those two are bruising, punishing backs who wear defenses down, Penny is a more explosive and speed driven player.
Finding a way to incorporate Penny more consistently into the offense with a better balance between him, Carson and Davis will turn an already dominant Seahawks rushing attack even more lethal.