BALTIMORE — Whatever the Seahawks do the rest of the season they will have to accomplish it without standout rookie running back Thomas Rawls.
The happy feeling of a 35-6 victory over the Ravens on Sunday was dimmed considerably by the sight of Rawls leaving the Seahawks’ locker room on the back of a golf cart, his left foot in a boot to protect a broken ankle suffered in the first quarter.
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said the injury — which also included torn ligaments — will sideline Rawls the rest of the season.
“We love the guy, and we’re really going to miss him,’’ Carroll said of Rawls, who was injured when he was tackled for a 3-yard loss by Baltimore’s Chris Canty near the end of the Seahawks’ first drive of the game. “He was a great asset to us this year.’’
Rawls, who made the team as an undrafted free agent from Central Michigan, finishes the season with 830 yards on 147 attempts, an average of 5.6 per carry, the best for a running back in franchise history. Justin Forsett held the record at 5.38 in 2009. Russell Wilson holds the record for any ball carrier with a 7.19 average last season.
“Thomas has had a fantastic rookie season for us,’’ Carroll said. “He just exemplifies what we are all about — toughness and hard-nosed and committed and grit and all that kind of stuff — and we are going to really miss him.’’
Recently acquired veteran DuJuan Harris, signed off the practice squad a week ago Saturday, and Fred Jackson stepped in for Rawls, who was not made available to media afterward.
The running game was not the same without him. Harris, who played in 24 games for Jacksonville and Green Bay from 2011-14, had 42 yards on 18 carries and Jackson 15 on seven.
Carroll said the team might acquire another running back, adding, “We’ll wait and see’’ when asked what the team will do.
The Seahawks also hope for a speedy return from veteran Marshawn Lynch, who has been out the past four games after having abdominal surgery
Lynch returned to Seattle this week to continue his rehab.
Carroll said after the game it remains unclear when Lynch might return.
“We’ll see how Marshawn does,’’ Carroll said. “He was back in rehabbing with us. We’ll see where he is. He’s got a chance to get back. It’s all about getting back in shape and getting right.
“I don’t know what the timetable is at this point. Our trainers can’t tell yet. But that will be the next think we will look to see how that works out.’’
Harris fumbled at the Baltimore 5-yard line in the second quarter to kill a Seahawks drive.
“I just didn’t have it tight right after the hand off,’’ Harris said. “I made a lot of mistakes today, but I have to tighten up.’’
As for Rawls, Carroll said that when they talked after the game, “he was trying to fire me up.
“It’s going to be tough … he’ll be OK. It’s just going to take some time.’’