Seahawks rookies winning awards but the real award is for 12s

(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /

The Seahawks are off to a surprising 5-3 start. The rookie class was supposed to be good but what they have done so far in 2022 is insane. But the best part for 12s is that what we are seeing from the rookies is just the beginning of what should be a sustained stretch – a long stretch – of success.

On Thursday, the NFL announced that the NFC Offensive Rookie of the Month was running back Ken Walker and the NFC Defensive Rookie of the Month was cornerback Tariq Woolen. Both of these players play for the Seahawks, of course. But this also marks the first time ever that one team had two rookies win the awards in the same month. Woolen and Walker have been great. But there are even more rookies for Seattle who will be impactful.

Also, this should be noted. While Woolen and Walker won their awards, quarterback Geno Smith won the NFC Offensive Player of the Month. If you fell asleep after the Seahawks traded Russell Wilson this offseason, what you just read is true. And Geno Smith has been better than Russell Wilson in 2022.

Seahawks have several award winners for October

But let’s get back to the rookies, Walker and Woolen. Woolen has far exceeded expectations. The hope was that after he was drafted the raw cornerback would one day be good. Now, the near-shutdown cornerback should one day be an All-Pro. Woolen has 4 interceptions this year so far.

Some thought Walker could be very good but Seattle was starting Rashaad Penny ahead of him. Walker was forced into play a lot sooner than expected but is currently 12th in average yards per rush among running backs (5.4) and 17th in rushing yards (461). But only two of the running backs above him have fewer carries than he does. Basically, he is doing more with less than the other running backs in the NFL.

But what’s great is that Seahawks general manager John Schneider and head coach Pete Carroll chose so well in the 2022 NFL draft that other rookies could win awards this year. This might be more possible on the defensive side as offensive linemen, like Abe Lucas and Charles Cross, don’t win flashy awards like offensive player of the month awards. But could edge rusher Boye Mafe win a Defensive Player of the Month award in November or December? Sure. So could cornerback Coby Bryant.

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My point is that so many rookies are doing so many fantastic things for the Seahawks in 2022. This should mean even greater future success for Seattle. And this season, which was thought to be a rebuilding year, could be a lot better than expected and in the next few years Seattle could be back in the Super Bowl.