Huard: Charbonnet has fewest adjustments to make of all Seahawks rookies

May 25, 2023, 10:19 AM | Updated: 10:37 am

Seattle Seahawks draft Zach Charbonnet...

UCLA RB Zach Charbonnet fends off USC's Max Williams on Nov. 19, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

With the NFL Draft having been wrapped up for almost a month and rookies joining the Seattle Seahawks to begin their pro careers, former NFL quarterback Brock Huard is looking at the adjustments the Hawks’ first-year players will need to make from college to the NFL level in order to find success as a pro.

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During Wednesday’s Brock and Salk on Seattle Sports, Huard’s focus was on one of his favorite picks of Seattle’s draft: UCLA running back Zach Charbonnet, who the Hawks selected No. 52 overall as their second of two second-round picks.

“Yeah, I think of this whole rookie class, he’s got the fewest (adjustments),” Huard said. “And honestly, part of that is the running back position.”

Huard noted that many running backs come into the NFL and find success right away, as was the case last year with the Seahawks and 2022 second-round pick Kenneth Walker III.

“If you can run and you’ve got the instincts and the tools, that carries,” Huard said. “… If you can do that and you can play that position and you’ve got those particular sets of skills, they play very quickly.”

That’s not to say Charbonnet won’t have any adjustments to make, however.

“Now, will he have to, I think adjustment-wise, learn how to protect the passer in multiple different protections, things that weren’t maybe in the passing game the most complex with (coach) Chip Kelly at UCLA? Sure,” Huard said. “I mean, there’s gonna be areas of pass protection. I think he’s a good pass catcher and route runner, but those are the areas where you can refine.”

As far as just being a pure runner, though, Huard thinks Charbonnet, who began his college career playing for coach Jim Harbaugh at Michigan, is ahead of where Walker was this time last year.

“This is a guy you’re not going to have to teach like you did Ken Walker, because he did it in college,” Huard said. “He did it at Michigan and he did it at UCLA. He did it in a system at Michigan that’s very much this system, and then he did it at UCLA with a very average O-line where he didn’t try to hit the home run all the time … Ken Walker had to learn that last year. (Charbonnet) does not, and I think it’s why he was so attractive to them at 52.”

Listen to the full second hour of Wednesday’s Brock and Salk at this link or in the player below.

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