With a one-year deal with free agent running back Fred Jackson pending and rookie undrafted free agent Thomas Rawls seizing a roster spot with a spectacular showing in the preseason finale, the Seahawks unloaded 2013 second round pick Christine Michael on the Dallas Cowboys.
Michael is an electric runner but his "creative" running style made him a tough fit in Tom Cable's running game, which is built around precise blocking and steps from the backs. Further, he struggled with ball security - the primary no-no for any skill-position player under Pete Carroll - often carrying the ball in the opposite hand. Michael also was viewed as Seattle's least reliable pass protector among running backs.
Unfortunately for the Seahawks, none of the above was news to Dallas or the other clubs who expressed interest in the former Texas A&M running back. As such, Seattle received just a "late conditional pick" as part of the deal.
For the Seahawks, the loss of Michael stings a bit because he was such an early pick. However, with star Marshawn Lynch the obvious focal point of Seatte's top-ranked rushing attack and both Jackson and Rawls better all-around fits in the Seahawks' system, it should be business as usual with the regular season kicking off next week in St. Louis.
The move is also a potentially good fit for Michael (who gets to return to the state of Texas) and the Cowboys, who were relying on a combination of Darren McFadden, Joseph Randle and Lance Dunbar to carry the load after opting not to reward DeMarco Murray for leading the NFL in rushing yards a year ago and watching him sign with division rival Philadelphia. With the talent the Cowboys possess at quarterback, receiver and along the offensive line, the foursome could combine to make Dallas a formidable running attack again in 2015.
In other news Sunday, the Seahawks (and every other NFL team) are now free to invite up to 10 players to join their practice squad.
According to multiple sources, popular former University of Washington wide receivers Kevin Smith and Kasen Williams are among the players to whom Seattle has already extended invitations.