Before the 2022 NFL season started, no one would have guessed that the Seattle Seahawks would be a dark horse candidate for Super Bowl LVII let alone a playoff appearance. The Seahawks (6-4) have been one of the biggest surprise teams in the NFL this season as the offense looks even better under Geno Smith than Russell Wilson last season and the defense has made huge strides under an impressive collection of veterans, new additions, and rookies. The Seattle Seahawks are a contender for the NFC West Divisional title through the midseason, and it’s time to hand out some awards.
The Seahawks are on a bye week after losing to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 21-16 in Munich, Germany in Week 10. This bye week comes at a perfect time for them to group for the second half of the season. The first half has been great, but not perfect as have lost to the 49ers once and three members of the NFC South. Despite the hiccups, the Seahawks have seen great success in the first half of the season that could make a great push into the second half of their schedule. Many players contributed to this successful season where there was a high amount of doubt even before week 1. Here are the Midseason Awards for the Seattle Seahawks this 2022 season.
2022 Seattle Seahawks – Midseason Awards
Best Offensive Player – Geno Smith (Quarterback)
Smith has been one of the biggest surprises in the NFL. His age, history with the Jets and Giants, and lack of leadership skills made NFL and Seahawks believe that Seattle was tanking or getting the offense ready for Drew Lock. Through 9 games, Smith has like one of the most efficient quarterbacks in the league as he has completely utilized the talent around him and trusts the coaching staff to create a high-level offense.
Going into Week 11, Smith is 5th in the league in passing yards (2,472), 5th in passing touchdowns (17), and 6th in average yards per pass attempt (7.8). Smith is highly efficient with the ball as he is 4th in QBR (67.7), first in the NFC, and 2nd in passer rating (108) only behind Miami Dolphins’ Tua Tagovailoa. He has been highly efficient with the ball as he has delivered multiple touchdowns to four different pass-catchers. Geno is a dangerous passer while in the pocket or rolling out for short, mid-range, and deep passes. Smith has the experience and knowledge of the Seahawks’ offense as his playmaking skills have given Seattle and fans hope for the playoffs and the NFC West much earlier than anticipated.
Best Defensive Player – Uchenna Nwosu (Edge Rusher)
There are several defenders for the Seahawks that could make the case as the best defensive player this season. One new addition to the team that has made an immediate impact is Uchenna Nwosu. The Seahawks signed Nwosu to a two-year; $19 million deal to be one of the key edge rushers. In 10 games this season, Nwosu has accounted for 40 total tackles, 24 solo tackles, a team-high 15 quarterback hits, a team-high 8 tackles for loss, and a team-high 7 sacks. Nwosu has also accounted for 39 quarterback pressures, which was the second-most going into Week 11. He has been the most consistent and reliable defender against the run and pass.
Best Offensive Linemen – Abraham Lucas
The expectations were the Seahawks’ first-round pick in left tackle Charles Cross was to be the best offensive lineman going into this season. While Cross has been great in multiple games, the biggest star of the offensive line is the other rookie tackle in the 2022 NFL Draft class. He may have a slight bias because he didn’t have a lot of expectations and was a late addition to the season’s starting line before Week 1, but Lucas has been tremendous.
Before the Week 10 game in Germany against the Buccaneers, Lucas has named a part of the 2022 Mid-Season NFL All-Rookie Team by Pro Football Focus. At that time, he allowed only 15 pressures on 346 pass protection plays. He also had a pass-blocking grade of 73.9 through Week 10. Against the tenacious Buccaneers’ defense, Lucas didn’t allow a single pressure on Geno Smith. He was put at No. 9 in CBS Sports’ Week 11 Rookie Power Rankings. Lucas can get even better as he becomes more familiar with NFL conditions, lifestyle, and the Seahawks’ offense.
Offensive Rookie of the Year – Kenneth Walker III (Running Back)
It was only a matter of time before Walker would have his time to shine. After Rashaad Penny was put on injured reserve, Walker exploded onto the scene for Seattle. In five starts this season, Walker has rushed for 441 yards and 6 touchdowns on 98 carries. He is averaging 4.5 yards per carry in those five games. He has also caught 12 receptions for 89 yards. His only hiccup was his 17 yards on 10 carries against the Buccaneers defense. Walker currently has seven rushing touchdowns, which is the most of any rookie running back this season. Walker was named the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Month for October.
Defensive Rookie of the Year – Tariq Woolen (Cornerback)
The Seahawks have acquired a fantastic 2022 rookie class with five key starters and more contributors. Arguably, the most impactful rookie this season is former UTSA cornerback Tariq Woolen. He has accounted for 34 total tackles, 28 solo tackles, nine pass breakups, five interceptions (second in the league), and two fumble recoveries. He has only missed one tackle so far this season. As a young starting cornerback, he has been targeted 42 times and allowed 23 completions for a total of 280 yards. Woolen, however, has not allowed more than 57 yards in a game this season. Pro Football Focus has named Woolen the 19th-best cornerback after Week 11 this season.