Seahawks RB Christine Michael running 'like he shot out of a cannon'

RENTON, Wash. -- Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll was asked Monday for his thoughts on how Christine Michael ran the football against the Los Angeles Rams.

"Really well. He hit it really well," Carroll said. "He looks like he shot out of a cannon. He’s really quick. He’s just getting going. I think he’s really going to get better and more efficient. He had the unfortunate turnover, but other than that he really hit it really well. He must be averaging 5 yards a carry or something. First two games, that’s pretty good."

The Seahawks' comeback attempt stalled when Michael fumbled after a reception on the final drive. But he carried 10 times for 60 yards in the game.

And looking at the bigger picture, the way he's run the ball has been encouraging. Michael has been the team's most productive back. He's averaging 5.0 yards per rush on 25 attempts. The rest of the team's backs have combined for 23 yards on 22 carries (1.05 YPC).

Carroll has made it clear that he believes the inconsistencies in the run game are a major reason why the Seahawks' offense has totaled just 15 points through the first two games.

"We’re not getting the same balance that we felt. With mixing the run game and the pass game, we can play off the running game," Carroll said. "It just hasn’t been as obvious right off the bat. That’s an issue."

As a team, the Seahawks are averaging 3.2 yards per carry (25th). Last year, that number was 4.54 (seventh).

The run blocking needs to improve, but Michael is averaging 2.72 yards before contact, 10th-best in the league. He's averaging 2.32 yards after contact, which ranks fourth.

Granted, it's a small sample size, but Thomas Rawls is averaging 0.21 yards before contact, which ranks last among 45 qualifying players. He's 34th in yards after contact (1.11).

Michael started the first game, and then it was Rawls in Week 2. But Rawls suffered a leg contusion, meaning Michael could get another shot this weekend against the San Francisco 49ers.

Once everyone is healthy, Carroll still envisions both backs complementing each other.

"We need to get [Rawls] out there, stay out there, get a feel for the game and start to feel the effect that he brings," Carroll said. "I think that’s part of what we kind of anticipated, seeing his input and complement Christine, who is doing a nice job. I think it’s going to be a nice one-two punch, we just have to get him back out there."