The Seahawks surprised some people when they took San Diego State running back Rashaad Penny with the 27th pick.
Those people would have been stunned if the Seahawks had taken him 18th, but coach Pete Carroll said that almost happened before they found a trade with the Packers that allowed them to move down nine spots.
“I don’t mind telling you, this pick fired me up,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said , via Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times. “He’ll be a three-down back for us. The guy can do everything. He has to work on his pass protection he was not asked to do a lot of, but he’ll give us the ability to play him on all downs and that versatility is really big.”
The Seahawks gained a third and a sixth in dealing down, but had no reservations about Penny himself. Their running backs combined for one touchdown last year, but Penny ran for 2,248 yards and 23 touchdowns last year, and had seven kickoff returns for touchdowns.
There were some concerns about his level of competition in the Mountain West, but General Manager John Schneider said Penny’s week at the Senior Bowl convinced them. In the game, he rushed nine times for 64 yards and had a 73-yard touchdown receptions.
“People were concerned about the level of competition but he absolutely ripped up the whole week down there,” Schneider said. “He acted like it wasn’t that big of a deal.”
But for a team whose leading running back last year had 240 yards, Penny could be a very big deal indeed.