Coming into the 2022 NFL season, expectations for the Seattle Seahawks weren’t very high.
This after the team traded franchise quarterback Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos in March. Following ten seasons of success with Wilson that netted one Super Bowl victory, two Super Bowl appearances and eight playoff appearances, the belief was the Seahawks were prepping for a rebuild.
Don’t tell head Pete Carroll and his team that, as the Hawks have begun the season 5-3 and are in first place in the NFC West.
The dynamic play of quarterback Geno Smith, along with rookie tailback Kenneth Walker III, and a defense led by rookie corner Tariq Woolen, have led a surprising resurgence in the Pacific Northwest.
And on Thursday, Smith, Walker and Woolen were all honored for their efforts in the month of October.
Carroll said it was incomprehensible earlier this week, but it has to mean the absolute world to him. #Seahawks
— Aaron Levine (@AaronLevine_) October 30, 2022
Smith Named NFC Offensive Player of the Month: Walker Named NFL Offensive Rookie of the Month
Smith was solid in September, but in October he took his game to another level, passing for 1,200 yards, nine touchdowns and just one interception.
Smith’s nearly 70 percent completion percentage and ability to avoid mistakes are what stood out the most. He also showed he could still run a bit, rushing for another 140-plus yards. He guided the Seahawks to a 4-1 record last month. With Smith at the helm the Seahawks through eight games and have scored the second-most points in the NFL (210) behind the explosive Kansas City Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes.
The Hawks are also second to the 8-0 Eagles in the NFC in points per game (26.8 to 26.1) entering “Thursday Night Football.”
As for Walker, he’s provided the Seahawks with a home run threat in the run game. The former Michigan State Heisman candidate who wowed college football last season looked a lot like that same guy in October. The dynamic scatback rushed for over 430 yards and five touchdowns, introducing his deep skill set to NFL defenders. The totals were the most of any rookie in the month of October.
Smith recently raved about Walker’s ability to make people miss in space following a touchdown run against the Cardinals a few weeks ago.
“It was one of those runs where he might have gained 1 yard, but he made like six dudes miss. That’s just how special he is. He can make something out of nothing.”
Cornerback Tariq Woolen Named NFL Defensive Rookie of the Month: Looking Like A Richard Sherman Clone:
On defense the Seahawks are much better than they’ve been in quite some time. That’s a tribute to guys buying into a scheme that’s built on pressure with a ton of zone “cover three” coverage on the back end.
That style fits the strengths of Woolen, who’s posted 19 solo tackles, three interceptions and five pass breakups. Woolen also had a pick six, and he’s beginning to look a lot like former Seahawks All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman.
Here’s what the former Seahawks legend has to say about Woolen on “The Richard Sherman Podcast.”
“He’s playing silly right now, it doesn’t even make sense. Four interceptions in four games. Looking like the Defensive Rookie of the Year.”
Trading Wilson wasn’t easy, but the Seahawks brass obviously knew something we didn’t, and it’s paying off all across the board.