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Tuesday Round-Up: Kenneth Walker III Named No. 2 Most Explosive Runner of 2022 By Next Gen Stats 

Nick Shook of Around the NFL breaks down why Kenneth Walker III was the most explosive running back and second most explosive runner in the NFL in 2022.

Seahawks running back Kenneth Walker III avoids a tackle during Week 7 of the 2022 season vs. the Los Angeles Chargers.
Seahawks running back Kenneth Walker III avoids a tackle during Week 7 of the 2022 season vs. the Los Angeles Chargers.

Good afternoon, 12s. Here's a look at what's out there today — Tuesday, May 30— about your Seattle Seahawks.

NFL Next Gen Stats Ranks Kenneth Walker III No. 2 Most Explosive Runner In NFL

Seahawks running back Kenneth Walker III made his first impression a lasting one as a rookie, rushing for 1,050 yards and nine touchdowns on 228 carries. The Michigan State alum became just the second Seattle back to hit the 1,000-yard mark in year-one, joining Seahawks Legend Curt Warner. Nick Shook of Around The NFL breaks down why Next Gen Stats ranked Walker as the No.2 most-explosive runner for the 2022 season.

Despite playing just 15 games, Walker led all rookies in rushing yards (4.6 YPC). A true blend of speed and power, Walker gashed defenses around the league for big plays - and made defenders miss. On the year, Walker was credited with 48 missed tackles while also not fumbling all season long. Walker rushed for 100 yards or more in five games, while generating 10 runs of 20-or-more yards. Shook broke down the Next Gen calculations, as Walker led all running backs, finishing No. 2 overall behind Chicago quarterback Justin Fields.

  • Explosive score: 90
  • 10+ yard runs: 29
  • 10+ pct: 12.7%
  • 15+ mph runs: 57
  • 15+ mph pct: 25%

Walker's arrival in Seattle last season filled a void at running back for Pete Carroll, providing the Seahawks with a reliable, powerful option in the backfield. What might be surprising to some is just how explosive Walker was in 2022. Walker finished third in explosive score thanks to a stellar big-play résumé. He led all rushers in top speed reached with the ball in his possession at 22.09 mph, tied for third in gains of 10-plus yards over expected (15) and hit 20 mph on four carries on the year (tying for fourth in the category). Walker managed to break 1,000 yards as a rookie with an average of 4.6 yards per carry, adding nine rushing touchdowns in an offense that was surprisingly productive with well-traveled veteran Geno Smith playing quarterback.

Oddly enough, Walker didn't exceed expectation often, but some of that is a product of Seattle scheming and blocking its way to an expected average of 4.2 yards per Walker carry. That will happen when a passing game is finding success, opening up more avenues for a runner to make a difference. Walker certainly did so in 2022.

After falling just short of winning the 2022 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award, Walker returns for his second season with a chance to prove he's already one of the league's best running backs.

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