Rashaad Penny has been one of the best running backs in the NFL over the past month, and after his most impressive outing yet the Seahawks' Week 17 blowout win over the Detroit Lions, Penny was named the NFC Offensive Player of the Week.
Penny, who has rushed for an NFL-leading 481 yards as well as five touchdowns over the last four games, had a career-best game in a 51-29 win over the Lions, gaining 170 yards and scoring twice on 25 carries. Penny's six runs of 25 or more yards this season have all come in the last four games, and are the second most in the NFL for the entire season. Only Indianapolis' Jonathan Taylor, who has eight runs of 25 or more yards, has more than Penny, and has done so on 317 carries compared to Penny's 96 carries.
"He looked great again today," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said after Sunday's game. "It's a big boost. You can see the rhythm it gives our offense, the balance that gives our offense to be able to be that explosive and he looked great again… Rashaad Penny has been a big factor. He has looked great, he has just looked great in running the football. I'm so fired up for him and for us, and, man, he's leaving no doubt. He's explosive. He weighs 236 pounds—the program says something else (220)—he's 236; he's a load to tackle. He's running through tackles, bouncing off guys. And then he uses his burst and the quick feet. The touchdown run—there's about three different carries in this game that were exquisite."
The Player of the Week honor is the first in Penny's career, and he is the second Seahawk this season to be named Player of the Week along with running back Travis Homer, who took home Special Teams Player of the Week honors following last month's win over the 49ers.
Penny is the first Seahawks running back to be named Offensive Player of the Week since Shaun Alexander earned it three times in 2005 on his way to becoming the only MVP award winner in team history.