SEATTLE – You might be worried about Thomas Rawls taking over for Marshawn Lynch next season.
Rest assured, however, that Rawls isn’t worried in the slightest.
“Not at all,” the Seattle Seahawks’ second-year running back told Q13 FOX in an exclusive interview this week. “I just go out there and work hard and do my job and have an amazing coaching staff and teammates and my support from back home.
“Facing adversity, I rise up in situations like this, so there’s no pressure.”
Rawls made a huge leap last season, going all the way from undrafted free agent out of Central Michigan to the Seahawks’ starting running back after Lynch went down with an abdominal injury. He wound up rushing for 830 yards and four touchdowns on 147 carries and catching nine balls for 76 yards and another TD.
His revelatory introduction to the starting lineup was cut short on Dec. 13, when he went down with a season-ending ankle injury against the Baltimore Ravens. He said the ankle is responding well to surgery and that he plans to be back in time for minicamp in June.
“My recovery is coming along quickly and I’m looking forward to being out there very soon,” he said.
Rawls said a rough upbringing in Flint, Mich., prepared him to succeed on the challenging road he’s been on for the last year.
“In my life every day, on the field and in my life, to know what it’s like to need a hand and needing someone to push and, you know, just fighting through adversity on the daily,” he said. “I feel like when I run and play, I am letting the pain out, and that’s what I love to do.”
Almost immediately after taking the field last season, Rawls drew comparison to Lynch’s punishing, downhill running style.
It is, he said, no coincidence.
Rawls said he learned a great deal from Lynch in their short time together.
“Just all of his knowledge about the game on and off the field,” Rawls said. “Making good business decisions. Trying to find running lanes and creating holes on my own …
“I learned so much from him and everybody, and I play on a team full of Hall of Famers. So to learn from them and so many aspects of their lives, all over the spectrum.”