Neck injury forces Seahawks running back Chris Carson into retirement

Seattle Seahawks
Seattle Seahawks running back Chris Carson (32) runs against the Arizona Cardinals during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

SEATTLE, Wash. — Running back Chris Carson has decided to retire after five professional seasons with the Seattle Seahawks due to a long-term neck injury that sidelined him for all but four games of the 2021 NFL season.

Just in case his neck dramatically improves and he decides to make a comeback, Carson won’t release a formal retirement statement, per NFL Insider Ian Rapoport.

He also reported that the Seahawks plan to officially release Carson using a failed physical designation. Once cleared, the 27-year-old will be eligible for millions of dollars in injury protection benefits so he can move into the next phase of his life with financial stability.

READ: Seahawks, Trail Blazers Chair Jody Allen says neither team is for sale

This is the same course of action the Seahawks organization took with Kam Chancellor and Cliff Avril—two other long-time Seattle football players whose careers came to a close due to neck injuries.

Carson finished his five-year career with 3,502 rushing yards and 31 total touchdowns. His physical profile and knack for powering through slim holes in the defense made him an effective runner. His best season was in 2019, when he totaled nearly 1,500 all-purpose yards and nine touchdowns.

READ: ‘Kids will never forget’ — Seahawks visit Yakima elementary school

The former seventh-round draft pick has ranked sixth in yards after contact and ninth in missed tackles forced since 2018, according to Pro Football Focus.

This possibility has been present in the minds of Seattle’s front office brass as they re-signed running back Rashaad Penny and drafted Kenneth Walker out of Michigan State with the 41st pick in this year’s draft.


BEAT THE HEAT: A complete guide on overcoming extreme temperatures