The Seattle Seahawks signed rookie running back Rashaad Penny, their first-round pick in the NFL Draft, the team announced Wednesday.
Penny, who was taken No. 27 overall by the Seahawks, signed a four-year contract. He is only the second player drafted in the first round by Seattle in the past six years.
The nation’s leading rusher in 2017, Penny rushed for 2,248 yards and 23 touchdowns in 13 games for San Diego State. He also had 19 receptions for two more scores.
Penny averaged 7.8 yards per carry last season and 7.5 yards in 2016, when he rumbled for 1,018 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns.
The 5-foot-11, 220-pound Penny also was a weapon in the return game for the Aztecs, bringing back seven kicks for touchdowns in his career. He averaged 30.2 yards per return for his career.
“Speed, durability, humble,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said after the team drafted Penny. “Probably the best part about this young man is that he’s humble, he’s ready to work. Whatever we want, he’ll do. The special teams accent is so unique, he’s really something.
“We aren’t just handing him the job, he’s got to come in here and battle, which he’s ready to do. But he’s such an exciting player, and he’s so versatile and so dynamic. We know that every time he gets his hands on the ball, he can score a touchdown.”
Seattle also signed linebacker Dadi Nicolas and wide receiver/kick returner Keenan Reynolds on Wednesday, according to the NFL Network.
Nicolas was sidelined last season due to a knee injury. He appeared in 11 games with the Kansas City Chiefs as a rookie in 2016, playing primarily on special teams.
Reynolds, a former quarterback at Navy, has spent time on the practice squads of the Baltimore Ravens and Washington Redskins. He was a sixth-round pick of the Ravens in 2016.