The mission for the Seahawks in Week 18 was simple: defeat the Los Angeles Rams and hope for help to earn a playoff berth. In an overtime thriller, Seattle defeated the Rams 19-16, and when his team needed him most, rookie running back Kenneth Walker III shined - and made history.
On 29 carries, the Michigan State alum rushed for 114 yards, including a 20-yard run that helped set up Jason Myers' game-winning field goal. Walker eclipsed 100-yards for the fifth time on the year and for the third-straight week. Finishing the regular season with 1,050 yards, Walker joins Seahawks Legend Curt Warner as the only backs in team history to rush for 1,000 yards in year-one. Walker finishes the year No.12 in rushing yards, leading all rookie backs despite starting only 11 games.
"He is good, man," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. "I'm impressed with him. The plays that he makes and the bursts that he has and the creativity and how tough he is. There's not a tougher run than the one he ran to convert I think it was fourth down. You can't run any harder than that. We have a tough guy. We have a guy that loves to play. He doesn't even flinch. He doesn't even flinch. He is going back out again. He isn't worried about nothing. I love to compete with him, and he is really talented."
Following the game, Walker discussed what it meant to join elite Seahawks company in the record books.
"It means a lot," said Walker. "That's a big goal. Like I always say, credit to the O-line. We had a stretch where we were struggling throughout the season, but we got it together. To be able to finish like that, I have to give all of the credit to the O-line."
Walker finishes the year second behind Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (13) for most rushes of 20-plus yards (10). In Week 17, Walker became the third Seahawk in franchise history to gain 1,000 yards from scrimmage. Walker joins New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley as the only players since 2018 to have three-straight 100-yard games as rookies. After starting the season with fewer than 10 carries in each of his first-four games, Walker has emerged as an Offensive Rookie of the Year contender. With the NFC Wild Card against division foe San Francisco 49ers looming Saturday, Seattle will lean on Walker to make a difference in the run game.
Seahawks players enjoyed a postgame meal while watching the Detroit Lions face the Green Bay Packers during Week 18 of the 2022 season. An eventual Lions win helped the Seahawks secure a playoff berth.