Christine Michael and Robert Turbin race to be Marshawn Lynchs backup


Christine Michael was everything the Seahawks thought he would be in rushing for 89 yards in the preseason opener. But now Robert Turbin is back and determined to remain Marshawn Lynch’s primary backup.As former Seahawks coach Chuck Knox used to say, “What you do speaks so loud, I don’t need to hear what you say.”That was the case for Christine Michael on Monday, as the rookie running back sat out practice for the second consecutive day at the team’s training camp because of back spasms. But the downright chattiness of his performance during the Seahawks’ 31-10 victory in their preseason opener on Thursday night continued to reverberate despite his absence.“Christine Michael looked great,” second-year quarterback Russell Wilson said Monday when asked about this year’s top draft choice rushing for 89 yards against the Chargers in San Diego. “So explosive. Really quick guy. Loves to run the football, that’s for sure. Every time, every play, he wants the football.”Michael got the ball 16 times against the Chargers and averaged 5.6 yards, with a long run of 24 yards. The second-round draft choice from Texas A&M was featured because All-Pro running back Marshawn Lynch did not get a carry in his brief stint and incumbent backup Robert Turbin was out because of the foot injury that forced him to start camp on the physically unable to perform list.It was the presence of Lynch, who rushed for 1,590 yards and 11 touchdowns last season, and Turbin, who added 354, that made the selection of Michael with the team’s top draft choice so surprising.Until general manager John Schneider explained the method behind the perceived madness.“He was the highest-rated player on our board,” Schneider said after the Seahawks made Michael the 62nd player selected in April’s draft. “We lost Leon Washington who was released, so we were looking for a little bit of depth there. And he is just our kind of runner. He’s a tough, intense, up-field, one-cut guy. And he’s a very good football player.”Not to mention a back who brings a wrinkle that differs from everything Lynch and Turbin were able to deliver last season.“He’s a different pace runner from Marshawn in the sense of how he hits it,” said Sherman Smith, the Seahawks’ original running back who now coaches the position. “He showed the speed that we thought he had and the acceleration.“So yeah, we liked what we saw in the opener.”So now there’s Lynch, who was acquired in a 2010 trade with the Buffalo Bills; Turbin, a fourth-round draft choice in 2012; and Michael, whose first name is pronounced CHRIS-tin.And each brings something to the mix. With Michael, it’s that quickness to the hole and explosion through it that Smith mentioned.“He accelerates a lot faster. Just a different type of runner,” Smith said. “But still that physical style. He’s got speed and he’s got power, so he gives us a combination of both.”But Smith still considers Turbin as the backup to a back who has done so much for the Seahawks in allowing them to establish their aggressive nature on offense – as Lynch has rushed for 573 yards in 12 games, 1,204 yards and 1,590 yards in his three seasons in Seattle.

via Christine Michael and Robert Turbin race to be Marshawn Lynchs backup.