Earlier this offseason, the running back creating the most buzz might have been new Cleveland Brown Ben Tate. He has been supplanted by a younger, more dynamic back making waves in the Pacific Northwest.
The second-year Seattle back flashed his ability last offseason, but an incomplete game combined with Marshawn Lynch and Robert Turbin ahead of him on the depth chart all but kept Michael off the field.
A year of seasoning has Michael poised to pounce on the NFL. If recent practices are any indication, Michael is going to be difficult to keep off the field. This is what Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll had to say about Michael, per ESPN.com's Terry Blount:
Michael had several impressive carries in the 11-on-11 scrimmage. There was no tackling, but he obviously would have broken into the secondary a couple of times and showed quite a burst at the line of scrimmage.
"We have very high expectations for him," Carroll said of Michael. "He's going to get a ton of work. He's just a million miles ahead of where he was in terms of understanding what we want scheme-wise, pass protection wise, route wise, and we know he's a natural runner. He's got explosive talent and we just want to get him to fit in."
To be fair, Michael was impressive last preseason, too. The difference is the Seahawks seem bent on getting him on the field more this season.
Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell said the Seahawks may be going to a committee approach at running back, per Clare Farnsworth of Seahawks.com.
These revelations have caused a stir in the fantasy football community in particular. If Michael can deliver on his promise in some capacity this season, he could be in for some big games.