Which Seahawks running back could be the odd man out this fall?
The Seahawks will whittle their roster from 90 players to 53 by summer’s end, and with so many new faces, there’s a spot for the taking in most position groups. That includes running back because even though Seattle had its first 1,000-yard rusher since 2014 last year in Chris Carson, the rotation is far from solidified.
On Wednesday, 710 ESPN Seattle’s Danny, Dave and Moore took a look at the running backs competing for a spot and came to one general consensus: it’s an open battle behind Carson and 2018 first-round pick Rashaad Penny. Competing for carries are C.J. Prosise, J.D. McKissic, Bo Scarbrough, Travis Homer and Nick Bellore. The team also added undrafted rookie Marcelias Sutton Wednesday.
Wyman, a former NFL linebacker and the current color commentator for Seahawks radio broadcasts, spoke about reasons why some of the players in the competition have advantages over others.
“I think it’s significant that they made (McKissic) the return specialist,” Wyman said. “He can do so many different things. He told us during an interview that he thinks he can run accurately 85 percent of the routes, and I imagine that by the time he gets to camp he’ll be 100 percent. I think he’s a hard worker, I think he makes the roster. C.J. Prosise, unfortunately, I just think he’s in an uphill battle because of the injuries; some guys just have a hard time playing with injuries. And you’ve got Carson and Penny, of course.
“I loved watching (Travis Homer) at OTAs. Now, you can’t tell a lot in these practices without pads, but I’ll say this: put simply, he knows where he’s running. He’s very deliberate about it. He makes a cut and he goes. It looks like he knows exactly where he’s going. And he’s got great acceleration, he catches the ball really well, he’s also another good special teams player. I know he was a captain on his team and one of those guys who takes it seriously.”
The Seahawks selected Homer in the sixth round of this year’s draft. The addition of Homer, who had 1,995 career yards at Miami, replenished a group that lost third-down back Mike Davis in free agency.
McKissic has become a versatile player for Seattle thanks to his contributions in the run game, the passing game and on special teams. Former third-round pick Prosise is also a versatile back – he shined in contests against Philadelphia and New England in 2016 – but has been sidelined by a series of injuries over the course of his three-year career.
Seattle added Scarbrough, a former seventh-round pick out of Alabama, in December to pad a group that was facing the possibility of entering a game with just one healthy running back. Bellore and Sutton are Seattle’s most recent signings — the 30-year-old Bellore, who has experience at fullback, was signed May 9, while Sutton was added May 29.
There will be plenty of time for the competition to shake out — the Seahawks continue OTAs next week, have their mandatory minicamp in mid-June, and kick off training camp in late July.