INDIANAPOLIS—Seahawks coach Pete Carroll spoke to the media Thursday at the NFL Scouting Combine, and during his press conference he expressed optimism about the chances that safety Earl Thomas and receiver Tyler Lockett are back for the start of the 2017 season.
Both players finished the 2016 season on injured reserve with broken legs, though Lockett's injury required surgery while Thomas' did not.
"I don't think there's any reason not to say that for those two guys," Carroll said when asked if they'd be ready for the start of the season. "Both of those guys have a really good chance to be there as we kick off the season."
Asked specifically about Thomas later, Carroll added, "All indications are that he will make it back. He's doing very well."
Carroll also said Thomas is a good place mentally after hinting at retirement in the days immediately following the injury, which was the first significant injury of his NFL career.
"It was a big shock to him," Carroll said. "He had never been injured before like that. He's feeling very competitive about it and he's going for it. His mentality is strong and he's looking forward to getting right."
A day after general manager John Schneider said cornerback DeShawn Shead would likely miss the start of the season due to the torn ACL he sustained in Seattle's Divisional Round playoff loss, the always-optimistic Carroll provided a slightly more positive outlook on the corner.
"I would be a little bit more optimistic," Carroll said. "DeShawn is such an extraordinary healer and competitor, I wouldn't put any limits on him right now, but it wouldn't be unlikely that we might go into the season before he's ready to go. But he's too much of a battler and he can do some marvelous things."
Photos of Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll meeting with the media on Thursday, March 2 at the 2017 NFL Combine in Indianapolis, Indiana.