The Seahawks saw three starters leave Sunday’s game early due to injury, and while none of those injuries appear to be overly serious, head coach Pete Carroll did say Monday that the status of a couple of key players could be in question this week.
Safety Bradley McDougald (knee) and running back Chris Carson (hip) both came into the game with injuries that had them listed as questionable, and after starting the game, both were on the sideline to begin the second half. Guard D.J. Fluker, meanwhile, exited in the fourth quarter with a calf injury.
Carroll sounded optimistic that Fluker will be back this week, saying, “He’s OK, I think. I think he came out fine.” The status of Carson and McDougald for this week, however, sounded less certain.
On Carson, Carroll said, “I talked to Chris, it’s about like it was last week. He’s sore, but he was sore last week and he made it through. We’ll have to wait and see, we’ll just go day-to-day with him. We’ll take care of him early in the week and see how he rounds out later in the week.”
Carroll clarified that this is not related to the hip injury that caused Carson to miss Seattle’s Week four win at Arizona.
McDougald barely practiced last week, sitting out Wednesday and Friday’s practice while doing limited work on Thursday, and Carroll said it could be a similar situation this week.
“(He’s) pretty sore, pretty sore again,” Carroll said. “He was sore last week, and he was pretty sore today again. He went back in the game because we needed him for a play (when Tedric Thompson had the wind knocked out of him), but he really wasn’t able to finish it. We’ll have to wait and see. Last week was really a quiet week for him, he didn’t practice much of anything, and I wouldn’t think it would be much different this week, and we’ll see how he is on gameday.”
While the Seahawks obviously hope to have McDougald for this week’s game at the Los Angeles Rams, Carroll was encouraged by what he saw from second-year safety Delano Hill, who saw the most significant playing time of his NFL career, playing 25 snaps in place of McDougald.
“He did really well,” Carroll said. “He had a really good week of practice with the onus on him that he may be starting in the game. He got all the first-team reps and really focused and was really in on it, and he played the game exactly like he practiced. He really played on the money. I was really happy to see him get a couple of good hits and play fast and chase the football like he did. So in case we have to go with him this week, he hopefully will build on this past week and keep moving. He has been with us the whole time, he has been in all the meetings and he has been working and ready to back up, but he took a step forward this week that I thought was really obvious, and I thought he played like it.”
In other injury news, Carroll said linebacker K.J. Wright came out of the game “in pretty good shape.” Wright, who missed the first six games of the season following arthroscopic knee surgery in August, made his 2018 debut in Seattle’s Week 8 game at Detroit, but was listed as questionable for this week’s game after a limited week of practice. Wright started at weakside linebacker and played 86 percent of Seattle’s defensive snaps.
“We’ll look after him this week, but we feel like he’ll be able to play again,” Carroll said.
Carroll also said that running back J.D. McKissic, who is eligible to come off of injured reserve starting this week, won’t return to practice this week.
“We’re going to give him another week of really pushing it to see how he does with the thought that maybe he could come back to practice the week after that,” Carroll said. “Once he comes back, he could go any time we want to, but he needs a little more time just to make sure that he’s right.”