Can DeeJay Dallas climb up to number 2 in Seahawks running back rotation?
Rookie Ken Walker is expected to take over the Seahawks running back rotation sooner than later. That could happen in 2022 but especially by 2023. Rashaad Penny is going to have the chance to build off his greatness of late 2021 and be the lead back but he is also fragile and must find a way to stay healthy.
That said, DeeJay Dallas is starting his third year with the team and each season has looked a tad bit better. Sure, his numbers in 2020 and 2021 are basically identical but most of his best games came later in the season and he looked much stronger than he did in his rookie year.
Dallas can also catch the ball and is a threat to do something with the once he has it. We already know he is a decent kickoff return guy so he has the quickness and movement to avoid tacklers in the open field so he is at worst a third-down back. Last season he caught 21 of his 23 targets and just needed to be used more in open space to be more productive.
But against the Steelers, Dallas looked fast and even stronger than in 2021. He averaged 7.3 yards on 10 carries and also caught a pass over the middle and took it 17 yards for a touchdown when he leaped into the end zone. Was this play against Steelers backups? Yes, but Dallas was clearly better than they were.
Hopefully, he will get a bunch of early reps against the Bears with Walker out due to an injury and Penny possibly sitting out to avoid him risking getting hurt. If so, Dallas, with his knowledge of how to block when a Seahawks drops back to pass, could move past Walker to be RB2 in the early part of 2022.