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Chris Carson was a seventh-round pick in 2017 and produced two 1,000-yard rushing seasons for the Seahawks; Seattle acquired Michigan State running back Kenneth Walker III in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft.
Last update: 07/26/22 9:57 p.m.
Seattle Seahawks running back Chris Carson is retiring from the NFL at age 27 with a neck injury that ended his 2021 season prematurely.
NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reported Tuesday that Carson would not officially announce his retirement if his neck improved.
The Seahawks are to release Carson with a failed physical designation that will see him receive millions of dollars in injury protection benefits.
“Since the first time I saw Chris in the movies I’ve loved his style and was thrilled when we got to have him when we did,” head coach Pete Carroll said on Tuesday. , on the Seahawks website.
“To see him grow and become such an impactful part of our program with such great style and all of that was a joy to watch. We will miss him and everything he brought to our program.”
Carson played in four games last season but suffered a neck injury in the Week 4 win over the San Francisco 49ers and was later placed on the injured reserve before undergoing surgery.
The decision to step down comes just over a year after he signed a two-year, $10.43 million contract in March 2021.
Seahawks general manager John Schneider added: “He’s an incredible pro, a guy who brings incredible energy. His running style is what we’ve always wanted here in Seattle. He’s the type of runner who the whole team feeds on. The type of player that defensive players come off the bench to watch him run – they can feel his energy. He’s the type of runner whose style affects the whole team, not just the offensive.
“It’s a big disappointment. We lasted as long as possible with him, he saw several specialists, but unfortunately he couldn’t pass our physical.”
Carson was a seventh-round pick for the Seahawks in 2017 and in five seasons rushed for 3,502 yards and 24 touchdowns alongside 107 catches for 804 yards and seven scores in 49 games.
Over the course of his career, he earned a reputation as one of the toughest rushers in the league, as evidenced by back-to-back 1,000-yard rushing seasons in 2018 (1,151 yards) and 2019 ( 1,230 yards).
Seattle sought reinforcements on the field in the NFL Draft earlier this year when they selected Michigan State’s Kenneth Walker III in the second round to add 2018 first-round Rashaad Penny.