Wednesday we took a look at how second year Seattle Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny did carrying the ball against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 2. Today we’ll take a moment to take a look at how starter Chris Carson looked when he was rushing against Pittsburgh defense.
Obviously, Carson has had some fumble issues so far this season, so that will be something to watch going forward and could be something that leads to more playing time for Penny, or perhaps even C.J. Prosise. In any case, without wasting too much time, let’s jump right to the film.
What jumped out to me on this is that both of Carson’s best runs - gains of 21 and 16 - both went to the right side behind the blocking of Germain Ifedi. In addition, Penny’s long touchdown run came on a cutback where the seal to create the one on one matchup was made by Ifedi. Obviously, there’s a lot more to a successful run than the blocking of a single player, but in watching these clips, combined with the clips of Penny’s carries, and it isn’t hard to understand how PFF graded Ifedi as the Hawks best run blocker in Week 2.
Lastly, one notable thing from these rushing attempts, along with the ten rushing attempt Penny had in Week 2 is the zone/man blocking splits. By my count all ten of Penny’s carries came on zone runs, which may be easier for Penny as he’s able to run to where he sees a crease, as opposed to a man blocking scheme where he’s to hit an assigned hole. While all of Penny’s carries came behind zone blocking, that was not the case for Carson. While Carson did see the majority of his carries behind zone blocking, there were multiple runs, including which guards or tackles pulled or trapped, creating space to run.
Whether or not this was a meaningful trend, or simply the way the team felt best suited to take on the Steelers we’ll have to wait and see, but it’s certainly something to keep an eye on going forward.