The Seattle Seahawks backfield will have even more depth as Rashaad Penny is set to make his season debut against Washington in Week 15. ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported Penny will play against Washington as the running back appears to have made a full recovery from his season-ending ACL injury in 2019.
“Seahawks RB Rashaad Penny is set to make his season debut against Washington, per source,” Fowler noted on Twitter. “Barring a change today, Seattle is expected to activate the former first-round pick off IR. Been a long road from a knee injury. TE Greg Olsen (foot) is considered a longer shot.”
As Fowler detailed, Greg Olsen also returned to practice this week but is not expected to play against Washington. It is still good news for the Seahawks as the veteran tight end is on pace to be available for the postseason.
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Carroll on Penny: ‘He Exceeded Our Expectations’
Penny has had trouble staying healthy throughout his young career but was playing some of his best football in 2019 before sustaining the unfortunate injury. Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll has given Penny rave reviews since he returned to practice in Week 14.
“He exceeded our expectations with his movement and his quickness and all of that,” Carroll said, per ESPN’s Brady Henderson. “He’s really in good shape. I don’t know what that means for next week, but he looked as healthy as anybody out there. So we’ll take it one shot at a time here, but very, very positive initial return and I know he’s really jacked about it.”
The Seahawks Could Have a Fully Healthy Running Back Group Heading into the NFL Playoffs
The Seahawks find themselves in the exact opposite position at running back than the team entered their 2019 postseason run. Barring a late injury, the Seahawks will have close to a healthy group of rushers with Chris Carson, Carlos Hyde and Penny all active down the stretch.
Seattle signed Marshawn Lynch and Robert Turbin heading into the last postseason after Carson, Penny and C.J. Prosise all sustained season-ending injuries just before the playoffs. The News Tribune’s Gregg Bell described Penny as looking “sleek” in practices.
“Rashaad Penny looked sleek and in ready-to-go shape in the 20 minutes I watched him at practice today,” Bell tweeted. “Seahawks coaches are raving how smooth he looks in his first practices in a year after reconstructive knee surgery.”
Here is a look at Penny moving around in practice.
Wilson Described Penny as ‘Electric’ in His Return to the Field
Russell Wilson has also taken notice of Penny’s performance coming off a significant injury. Wilson described the running back as “electric” in his return to the field.
“He’s been electric out at practice,” Wilson said, per Sports Illustrated. “Just watching him run, he looks like Penny again. He’s physical, quick, catches the ball well, he picks up his protections. I’m excited for him. He’s worked really hard for this.”
Carson is clearly the team’s top back, but it will be interesting to see how the Seahawks split carries between Penny and Hyde. Given Carson’s recent injuries, it is good news to add one more healthy back into the mix.