Free safety Earl Thomas was added to the Seahawks' 53-man roster Saturday, indicating that he will indeed play in Seattle's 2018 season opener at Denver.
Thomas, who sat out training camp and the preseason, returned to the team on Wednesday, but the Seahawks had an exemption for up to two weeks allowing him to practice without counting towards the roster. Making a move to add Thomas to the 53-man roster now means the All-Pro safety should be on the field Sunday.
Asked on Friday about Thomas' first week back with the team, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said, "He was solid all week long. He's fired up and studying and working hard at it, and he had a good week."
The addition of Thomas to the roster was one of a handful of moves Seattle made in its secondary prior to Sunday's game. Dontae Johnson, who had been the starter at right cornerback in the past two preseason games, was placed on injured reserve. Johnson showed up on the injury report on Thursday with a groin injury and was listed as questionable on Friday. To add depth at corner, the Seahawks promoted Akeem King off of their practice squad.
The Seahawks also waived rookie cornerback Simeon Thomas, who they claimed off waivers earlier in the week.
With Johnson out, rookie Tre Flowers is likely the next man up at right cornerback, though Neiko Thorpe, back from a wrist injury that kept him out of most of camp and the preseason, could also be an option there. Flowers, a fifth-round pick who played safety in college, has impressed coaches in his quick adjustment to a new position, and saw a lot of playing time in the preseason, including starts in the first two games.
"He has done a nice job," Carroll said of Flowers Friday. "He started a couple of games for us already, and if that's the case, then he's ready to go.
"Really he has done everything we have asked him to do. He has studied really hard, he has worked on the mentality that it takes to play outside. He has been really diligent, he hasn't missed a snap of play all through the preparation all through the offseason, so he has benefited from all the time. And he's a really smart player too. He's tough, physical. Really he has done everything right, so he's giving himself a great chance. It's a great accomplishment for him just to be here right now at this time playing for us throughout the preseason. So I'm fired up for him, he's ready."