Seattle Seahawks top five candidates to have surprising seasons

/ Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports
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Surprise season No. 5: Seahawks running back Kenny McIntosh

Yes 12s, for my fifth and final player, I'm going with the Seahawks seventh-round selection, a man who by all rights should be listed fourth in the depth chart at running back. Now, I can't say that Kenny McIntosh reminds me of Chris Carson that much, but his situation certainly does. Like Carson, McIntosh is joining a team with an established leader and a prized newcomer.

For Carson, Thomas Rawls was the Seattle veteran, and the team added Eddie Lacy - and no, I'll never live down the fact I was excited about that move. Mike Davis was brought into Seattle that season as well. While he hadn't proven much yet in the league, Davis was entering his third year in the league. To that point, he hadn't proven to be as valuable as DeeJay Dallas has now, but he was certainly ahead of Carson when the Seahawks started camp in 2017.

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McIntosh is facing more considerable challenges than Carson did. Kenneth Walker III should have been the league's Offensive Rookie of the Year and will be even better this season. The man penciled in at number two at running back isn't a guy who couldn't make weight on the International Space Station, but heralded rookie Zach Charbonnet. Charbonnet ran for over 2,400 yards combined in his junior and senior seasons at UCLA. Despite leading the Georgia Bulldogs in rushing last year, McIntosh combined for less than 1,200 in his junior and senior campaigns. And as I mentioned already, DeeJay Dallas has been a solid contributor off the bench.

So how can Kenny McIntosh possibly turn in a surprising season with that competition ahead of him? Happily, it won't be via the Chris Carson method. You know, where everyone else stinks or gets injured, and you prove you only needed a chance to show you were The Guy all along? No, I happen to think the Seahawks will have a prolific offense, even better than last season. For all the reasons for that statement, check out this excellent write-up by our own Michael Thompson. A better offense means more plays and more plays means more opportunities. And in steps Kenny McIntosh.

Yes, Walker was a fine receiver out of the backfield, and at times he was spectacular. But that's not his forte. Charbonnet was an excellent receiver out of the backfield in college with 61 catches over his final two seasons. But McIntosh was special. Charbonnet averaging 8.5 yards per catch at UCLA. McIntosh averaged 11.3 yards per reception.

It's not as if that was a small sample size, either. K-Mac caught 43 balls as a senior for 505 yards and two scores. He had four receiving touchdowns overall, while Charbonnet had none. Know who was the third-leading receiver for the NCAA champion Bulldogs? That's right, the Seahawks seventh-round pick. Yes, I knew you 12s were smart. McIntosh can get it done, and I predict he'll do just that in the NFL this season, too.

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For those of you about to say I'm ignoring Derick Hall or Charbonnet, or - mother of God give me strength - Devon Witherspoon or Jaxon Smith-Njigba, this is about surprising seasons. I think at least two of those four players will have outstanding rookie seasons, and they'll all be major contributors for the Seahawks. And that, dear 12s, should not be a surprise to anyone.