Chris Carson starts–in 2018
Pete Carroll himself plucked Chris Carson out of the seventh round of the draft, a believer in Carson’s speed and slashing ability. Similar to the Thomas Rawls Story, Carson is a project for Carroll and his coaching staff. Rawls has battled injuries the past two years, but he appears to form a solid tandem with free agent signing Eddie Lacy, who passed his first weigh-in test and at this point is on his way to seeing significant time in Darrell Bevell’s presumed running-back-by-committee approach.
Carson would have to leap over fan-favorite (not that that matters in personnel choices) Troymaine Pope and even Alex Collins to contend with Rawls, Lacy, and receiving back C.J. Prosise for meaningful action.
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So it appears Carson is headed to the practice squad for his rookie year. It’s possible he beats out Pope or Collins for a roster spot, but it probably behooves Carroll and company to let Carson develop a year before inserting him in the running back competition for 2018.
A year from now, who knows what the Seahawks backfield will be like? Lacy is on a one-year deal. If he has a huge season in 2017, he’ll likely price his way out of Seattle. If he does nothing, the Seahawks will simply let him walk. Rawls’ and Prosise’s injury history could dog them, leaving Carson a share of carries along with Pope, Collins, and/or whoever the Seahawks bring on board.
Or, more optimistically, Carson forces Carroll and Bevell to put him in the game–in 2018.
Will these bold predictions come true? Probably not all of them. Even most of them appear at this point in the offseason pure fantasy. But the Seahawks made the strange choice to start a rookie quarterback named Russell Wilson after he wowed coaches in Training Camp. With a new crop of rookies, expect a few new names to step this season.