Rashaad Penny "deserves a shot" to run as Seahawks lead running back


Seattle Seahawks v Houston Texans

HOUSTON, TEXAS - DECEMBER 12: Rashaad Penny #20 of the Seattle Seahawks runs the ball for a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium on December 12, 2021 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)Photo: Getty Images

RENTON -- Coming off a career-high 137 yards and two touchdowns against the Houston Texans on Sunday, Rashaad Penny is going to continue to get his chance to lead the backfield of the Seattle Seahawks.

"I think he deserves a shot to show that, to start it out," head coach Pete Carroll said on Monday. "We’ll still rotate to keep you guys fresh, but yeah, we’re gonna give him a shot again to come right on back and see if we can keep going."

Penny racked up a season-high total on the ground for the Seahawks and scored on touchdown runs of 32 and 47 yards in a 33-13 victory. While the Texans are the league's worst rushing defense at nearly 148 yards per game allowed, Penny still had to seize the opportunities available to him.

It wasn't just the big touchdown runs that stood out to Carroll. Penny said after Sunday's game that he made a point to be more physical in his running style. It showed up Sunday with several runs that saw him lower his head and deliver blows to his opponents at the end of runs in Houston.

“That was my favorite part of his game,” Carroll said. “It wasn’t the big runs -- I mean, those are beautiful plays and all that -- but it was the two or three times when he saw the situation and attacked it.”

Penny said it was something he wanted to add to his game and that recent addition Adrian Peterson helped give him examples of what to do.

"I've been telling myself start running more aggressive and just hitting the holes," Penny said. "Nothing is there just just hit it. I mean it was amazing hole there. So I mean, it was just all about hitting and then trusting your block and then, you know, just one-on-one with a safety.

"Something I've learned from watching Chris [Carson] and now having Adrian Peterson in the room, watching his highlights a few days ago, just looking at what he does in the run game and trying to mimic a little bit of that."

Injury Updates:

-- Defensive back Gavin Heslop had successful surgery in Houston Sunday night to address multiple fractures sustained in his left leg in the team's win over the Texans.

Heslop was injured with just over a minute left to play when Texans receiver Nico Collins fell into his leg while planted after making a reception. Heslop fractured both his tibia and fibula in the play and remained in a Houston hospital overnight for surgery. He is expected to return to Seattle in the coming days.

"He had a real successful surgery," Carroll said. "He sounded way better, was much more upbeat about that everything worked out OK and all that. He’ll get back here in a couple days.

Heslop had just been promoted to the team's active roster earlier in the weekend to take the roster spot of Jamal Adams.

"A heartbreaker. Just got started," Carroll said. "He was doing well, too. And to get to this point where we got him active and all that, it’s just too bad."

-- Defensive tackle Bryan Mone sustained a PCL sprain in his knee that was ultimately more welcome news that it could have been for the Seahawks.

"He’s getting along real well today," Carroll said. "Very surprised he was getting around as well today. So we’ll just have to wait and see. We’ll take care of him during the week and find out by the end of the week, he’ll be OK. But it was a very, very positive report relative to not knowing if it was an ACL or all that kind of stuff yesterday. So we’ll keep our fingers crossed. It could be OK."

-- Cornerback D.J. Reed is doing OK after colliding hard with Texans receiver Brevin Jordan late in the game. The collision knocked the wind out of Reed and he sustained a chest contusion.

Photo Credit: HOUSTON, TEXAS - DECEMBER 12: Rashaad Penny #20 of the Seattle Seahawks runs the ball for a touchdown during the fourth quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium on December 12, 2021 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)


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