Pete Carroll “surprised” Ken Walker III’s game is so well-rounded

Pete Carroll “surprised” Ken Walker III’s game is so well-rounded

Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny is set to miss Saturday’s preseason opener against the Steelers and that will give second-round pick Ken Walker III more of a chance to make an impression in his first NFL game action.

If it follows the impression that Walker has made in training camp, his playing time might be extensive come the regular season as well. Head coach Pete Carroll said at a Thursday press conference that Walker “just wasn’t ready” to pass protect at the NFL level when he left Michigan State, but that his work with running backs coach Chad Morton in practice has led to rapid improvement on that front.

“You asked about surprises,” Carroll said, via Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times. “I’m surprised he’s so well-rounded. A runner, he’s blocking, again, I think I mentioned it the other day, but his pass-protection stuff, he just turned the page.”

Running backs who can’t pass protect can find it hard to stay on the field, so adding that to the arsenal should be a plus for Walker as he bids for playing time during his rookie season.