With a need arising at outside linebacker, the Seahawks turned to a familiar face, signing Frank Clark, who spent his first four seasons in Seattle after being selected in the second-round of the 2015 draft.
Clark gives the Seahawks a proven veteran to add to the edge-rush rotation after Uchenna Nwosu suffered a pectoral injury that will require season-ending surgery, Pete Carroll said. Nwosu was placed on injured reserve to make room on the roster for Clark.
"Uchenna is going to get surgery, so that will be season-ending for him," Carroll said prior to Wednesday’s practice. "There's a spot there that we had a shot with Frank, and having background and history with him, it's a natural spot for him to play with us and see if he can get in the rotation and help us out. We'll see how it goes."
Carroll expects the transition to be a quick one for Clark, and is anticipating the three-time Pro-Bowler will be able to play when the Seahawks host the Browns on Sunday.
"He knows exactly the position that we're asking him to play," Carroll said. "We think the transition to fit into the spot playing outside 'backer and rushing in the 4-3 stuff, it just fits naturally. His experience is important with such a young group of guys that he's with now. So I'm hoping that will all fit together well."
Clark, 30, returns to the Seahawks after spending the 2019-2022 seasons in Kansas City where he was a three-time Pro-Bowl selection and where he won a pair of Super Bowls with the Chiefs. He signed with the Broncos this season, but was released earlier this month after appearing in only two games.
During his four seasons in Seattle, he recorded 35.0 sacks, including 32 over his final three seasons. In 2018, Clark recorded a career-best 13 sacks, while Jarran Reed, who also returned to the Seahawks this season, had a career-best 10.5, with both players crediting each other for creating pass-rush opportunities playing off of each other.
The Seahawks placed the franchise tag on Clark following the 2018 season, then traded him to Kansas City prior to the 2019 draft. In addition to his 23 regular-season sacks with Chiefs, Clark also had 10.5 postseason sacks in 12 playoff games, including 5.0 in three games on the way to a championship following the 2019 season. Including his time with Seattle, Clark has 13.5 postseason sacks, the third most in NFL history.
While the Seahawks are excited to be adding a player of Clark's caliber midway through the season, they know they will miss Nwosu, who has been one of their best defensive players since signing in free agency last year.
"(We'll miss him) a lot, man," linebacker Bobby Wagner said. "His leadership, his play. He's such an amazing player, it's very unfortunate what happened. He's real stout in the run game, equally as good in the pass game, extremely smart, a leader, just all-around a good person and a fun guy to play with. It's going to be tough to have him out, but I know he's going to work hard and try to get back."
Take a look back at Frank Clark's time with the Seattle Seahawks. Clark was drafted by the Seahawks in the second round (63rd overall) in the 2015 NFL draft and played for the team from 2015-2018.