Robert Nkemdiche has been elevated from the practice squad for Sunday's home-opener against Tennessee.
The Seahawks added to their already-deep defensive line for Sunday's game against Tennessee, elevating defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche from the practice squad.
Additionally, rookie receiver Dee Eskridge, who left last week's game with a concussion, has been downgraded from doubtful to out.
Nkemdiche, a 2016 first-round pick out of Mississippi, signed with Seattle this offseason looking to revive his career after being out of football in 2020, and got off to a good start in training camp before a groin injury kept him from playing in the preseason. He was released during the cutdown to 53-players, then re-signed to the practice squad.
When he was healthy in camp, Nkemdiche impressed teammates and coaches with not only his play, but also his energy and love for the game that Seahawks coach Pete Carroll described as his "beautiful spirit."
"He's a beautiful spirit now," Carroll said. "He really cares about having fun and enjoying it. I can't imagine someone putting a lid on him back in the day. Maybe that's why some of the stories came out. Here we welcome the spirit of it and what he brings, and everyone has to get along and fit in and all that. He does too. I don't want to harness that kind of love for being outgoing, and expressive and all that. I don't want to get in the way of all that. I'm going to cheerlead for that."
The Seahawks were already deep on their defensive line, as was evident in Week 1 when L.J. Collier, a 16-game starter last year, was a healthy inactive. Nkemdiche does, however, provide another interior line option with defensive tackle Bryan Mone listed as questionable due to an elbow injury. The Seahawks also are expecting a big test on run defense with Tennessee running back Derrick Henry, the reigning NFL Offensive Player of the Year, coming to town.
As a practice squad elevation, Nkemdiche is eligible to play this week without the Seahawks having to make a corresponding move on the 53-man roster, then he will revert back to the practice squad Monday without being subject to waivers.
Photos of the Seahawks playing the Titans throughout the years, including their time as the Houston Oilers. The Seahawks face the Titans at Lumen Field during Week 2 of the 2021 regular season.