Leon Washington To Be Named Seahawks Starting Running Back?

Danny ThompsonContributor IAugust 24, 2010

SEATTLE - AUGUST 21:  Running back Leon Washington #33 of the Seattle Seahawks celebrates after scoring a touchdown during the preseason game against the Green Bay Packers at Qwest Field on August 21, 2010 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Seahawks fans love Justin Forsett, but a 5'8" and 198 pounds featured running back running behind an offensive Llne in rebuilding mode doesn't exactly tickle my fancy, and apparently it doesn’t tickle Pete Carroll’s as well.

The Seahawks official team website reports that Coach Pete Carroll said Leon Washington might start Saturday's third preseason game at Minnesota. Meaning a third different running back will take the field first in as many preseason games for the Seahawks.

In regards to the preseason revolving door at running back Carroll said “We just give these guys a chance to compete, and that’s exactly what we’re doing. There’s a good chance that Leon will start next week, and we’ll see how he does in that role. That’s what our plan was, to give these guys a chance to go with the first group and show us what they’ve got.”

Carroll said "We decided that somewhere months ago about how we were going to do this in the first couple of games,” referring to Justin Forsett starting last week’s game and Julius Jones starting the opener.

Unfortunately at 5'10" Julius Jones is one of the biggest backs considered in the conversations of starting running back and 5’10" is exactly a beast in regards to a NFL starting running back, all one has to do is spend five minutes at Hawks camp to get an idea of what the fans really think of Jones starting.

The sound made every time Jones makes a mistake reminds me of the childhood game peek-a-boo, without the two words "peek a" in the phrase.

Speaking of peek-a-boo...well let's just say that's the best description I can give you regarding Julius Jones' football ability as a Seahawk.

If there is any doubt Caroll is uneasy about his situation at running back look at the fact in two games two separate backs have start and in week three, a week that is traditionally the dress rehearsal for the start of the regular season the start of Leon Washington will make it three consecutive weeks in a row a different back has gotten the nod to start a game, that not exactly a sign of a confidence in a coaches running game.

Although the Seahawks official team website reports that Coach Pete Carroll said Leon Washington might start Saturday's third preseason game at Minnesota, Washington’s debut last week against the Packers that included a touchdown  and 19 yards rushing suggest that he should. Last week’s performance showed that the broken leg he suffered in week 7 last season hasn't robbed him of any of his game changing speed.

Therefore Washington should get the nod, in the last 3 seasons Washington has averaged at least 4.5 yards per carry and to my eyes, seems to be the most explosive back on the roster when it comes to hitting the whole.

Some might point to Forsett 5.4 yards per carry and 5 totals TD's from last season as case that Forsett is the proven more productive running back. In that instance I would remind Hawks fans that in 2008, which was Washington's last healthy season, he averaged 5.9 yards per carry and had 8 total TD's in a role that for the Jets that was less significant than the role Forsett had for the Hawks last year.

I'll admit Washington's audition is going to come against one of, if not the best run defense in the NFL in the form of the Vikings; but if he's successful, Hawks fans should embrace him with open arms because he might be the only Stallion in the stable.