Husky Fans Should Let Go of Chris Polk


Washington fans should say good bye to one of the greatest running backs to ever grace Montlake Boulevard. Chris Polk may have one year of eligibility left, but Washington faithful should thank him for everything he’s done, and wish him well on his journey into the National Football League.

He likely won’t go in the first round, he may even slip deep into the second round, which will cause some to sour over his early exit from Washington, but I think he needs to leave.

Forget any records he could set if he comes back next year or the chance at becoming the greatest Husky running back ever, this is about Chris Polk doing what’s best for Chris Polk; and in turn I don’t see the Huskies suffering as much as some may initially believe.

Polk is a fourth year junior this year and already has earned his degree, staying a fifth year does him next to nothing in the educational realm; he could go after a graduate degree, but that seems highly doubtful.

Let’s look at his NFL outlook; I project him as a

mid-second round selection; with the possible upside of getting into the late first round. Looking at the 2011 draft, the running back selected nearest to where Polk should go was Ryan Williams, selected by the Arizona Cardinals at pick number 38 overall.

Williams inked a contract worth five million dollars over four years, with no signing bonus. We can assume Polk will earn somewhere in that ball-park, potentially more either way, but for easy math I’ll settle on roughly 1 million per season for Polk on his first contract.

The average lifespan of a running back is incredibly short, remember Shaun Alexander, more recently Chris Johnson, when these backs get to a certain age, they just stop producing and won’t get paid anymore. Polk’s running-style makes him even more susceptible to a short career, he’s tough as nails, but as we’ve seen he takes a beating week in and week out.

He may only get one solid contract in the NFL, one that makes him one million dollars per season; would you really want him to potentially waste one of those money making seasons with Washington? He might as well be paying a million dollars to play collegiate football; he would be the anti-Oregon Duck.

Could the Huskies benefit from Polk coming back next season? No doubt about it, but do they need him? No, they don’t.

Jesse Callier has shown the ability to make plays and this season he’s even run some between the tackles; he may not even be the starter next year.

Freshman Bishop Sankey didn’t get many carries in his first season, but when he did, he looked like he was going to break open a monster run every time. His speed is unmatched in the Husky backfield; and while he may not be the between the tackle runner that Polk has been, the Ducks have shown that speed backs can have success at this level.

Between Callier and Sankey, plus the hopeful return of Deontae Cooper, the Huskies backfield will be in fine shape without Polk, so why not let him go and wish him the best?

He’s proven all he needs to prove at this level, he’s run against just about every test there is, all with nearly no help from his offensive line. When he decides that he is going to turn pro, don’t turn your back on him Husky fans, because Chris Polk does bleed purple, he just knows his time wearing purple is over.

Follow Mitchell on Twitter: @AMitchellReport