Ed Dickson isn't used to having to be patient when it comes to his health.
Through his first eight seasons, the veteran tight end missed only three games, and he played in all 16 games every season between 2013 and 2017. So it was an unusual experience for Dickson when, after joining the Seahawks as a free agent in 2018, he had to open the year on injured reserve due to a knee injury.
Dickson finished that season playing 10 games and making some significant contributions to Seattle's offense, but when training camp rolled around in 2019, another knee injury led to surgery, meaning a second straight year starting the season on IR.
"The most frustrating part about it is leaving your brothers out high and dry when you feel like you're working back into it," Dickson said. "For the last couple of weeks now, I've been traveling to the games, but to be out there not suited up and watching your brothers play, that's the deeper feeling that I get. Now I can contribute. I don't care if I'm run blocking all game, I'm contributing to an overall win."
Dickson returned to practice in Week 9, but had to wait for his chance to be added back to the 53-man roster. Wednesday was the deadline to activate Dickson or leave him on injured reserve for the rest of the season, and the Seahawks did just that, adding depth at a position that needs it thanks to Luke Willson's hamstring injury.
"It was a great time for him to be available to us," Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said. "He wanted to get back a couple weeks ago. We couldn't fit it in. Luke is kind of opening the door for him... Ed coming back is great. He's really excited to contribute and help out."
Dickson obviously would have preferred to be playing all season, but he also knows he stepping into a good situation with a chance to contribute to a season that has seen the Seahawks jump out to an 8-2 record.
"The time is now," he said. "I talked to coach about it, I talked to my position coach about it. You never want to be hurt or be out, but to come back when the team is doing as well as they're doing and to be able to help and continue that path that we're going on, it feels good… They've been playing very well, it's just continuing to do the things they've been doing, and I'm going to plug in wherever I plug in and keep trucking from there."
Dickson finished last season with 12 catches for 143 yards and three touchdowns, but he feels like he will be in a position to contribute even more this year having had more time in Seattle's offense and with Russell Wilson.
"The biggest difference is having two years under my belt in the offense," he said. "I'm not scrambling, I'm not second-guessing myself. I know it pretty well, I probably can teach it, and I'm just going out there and, whatever plays I have, just making them positive plays."
Go behind the scenes with team photographer Rod Mar as he shares moments from the Seattle Seahawks' Week 10 game against the San Francisco 49ers. Eye on the Hawks is presented by Western Washington Toyota Dealers.