Maybe Russell Wilson is indestructible after all.
One day after Wilson suffered a sprained ankle after being stepped on by Miami’s 305-pound defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, coach Pete Carroll said his quarterback will practice Wednesday and start on Sunday when the Seahawks (1-0) play at the Los Angeles Rams.
“He’s pretty good,” Carroll said Monday. “He’s not in a boot. He’s walking around. He’s practicing on Wednesday and he’s planning on playing. We’ll see how it goes.”
Asked if that development was a surprise, even though Wilson has never missed a practice — let alone a game — in his five NFL seasons, Carroll was optimistic.
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“Well, for people that think negatively about it, they would be surprised,” the coach said.
Wilson was less mobile but rallied the Seahawks late, throwing the winning 2-yard touchdown pass to Doug Baldwin with 31 seconds remaining in the 12-10 win over the Dolphins.
After the sack by Suh in the third quarter, Wilson had to be helped off the turf by referee John Hussey.
“I was looking over my shoulder to see if he would come out for the next series, to see if he’d get up off the bench. We were concerned,” Carroll said.
“We will still be concerned. We will take care of him, do a really good job of taking care of him during the week — and we are counting on him making it back.”
Trevone Boykin got his helmet on and took snaps with starting center Justin Britt in front of the bench while Wilson was on the training table getting his ankles heavily and hurriedly taped. That was during one of the Dolphins’ five three-and-out drives against Seattle’s defense.
Boykin, the undrafted rookie from TCU, is the only other quarterback on the roster.
That may change.
Asked if the Seahawks are looking to sign a veteran backup, Carroll said: “Yeah, we are considering all of that.”
Wilson said following Sunday’s win he was counting on some “ice, prayer and a lot of treatment” to play this week against the Rams.
Though he’s never been on the Seahawks’ injured list, Carroll said this injury isn’t the first time Wilson has needed extra care to get through a practice week.
“You guys aren’t aware of a couple other things that have gone on. He’s been banged up at times,” Carroll said. “They’re not injuries but things that have bothered him and stuff. Just stuff that happens over the course of getting pounded on.
“His attitude’s just always been the same. He never flinches. He never wavers. So this is the first time he’s really had something that we’d consider an injury that you’ve got to talk about. … He almost welcomed the challenge and had an attitude about, ‘OK, here we go. I’m going to do this.’
“So that’s why I tell you he’s walking around (Monday). You can hardly tell anything’s wrong with him.”
Wilson’s injury happened on Seattle’s first drive of the second half against Miami. He was noticeably less willing and able to run away from the pressure that was streaming through the Seahawks’ offensive line, which has new starters in four of five positions this season. Wilson also lost zip on many throws that flailed short into the turf, especially farther passes close to either sideline.
Wilson remained in whatever pocket Bradley Sowell, Mark Glowinski, Justin Britt, J’Marcus Webb and Garry Gilliam could form behind the line more frequently. He threw mostly over the middle on short dump-offs and crossing routes.
Interestingly, the Seahawks gained 205 yards on 44 plays for an average of 4.6 yards per play and scored just six points before Wilson sprained his ankle. While Wilson played with a sprained ankle, they gained 157 yards on 34 plays — the same average of 4.6 yards per play — and scored, yes, six points.
Wilson has six days to rest and get treatment– and, heck, drink his Tacoma-based “Recovery Water” he endorses and in which he has invested. Yet the final 1 1/2 quarters against the Dolphins could be a preview of how Wilson will be forced to play against the Rams.
Asked Monday morning on Seattle’s 710-AM radio if Wilson had a high-ankle sprain, which are more problematic, Carroll said his quarterback has “a little bit of everything.” That doesn’t usually completely go away in six days.
The issue this week for Wilson: How is he going to fare with presumably less mobility than he’s had against a Rams’ defensive front that is younger, more aggressive and potentially more damaging than the Dolphins’?
In eight career games, the Rams have sacked Wilson 35 times. That’s the most Wilson’s been dumped by any opponent, and that was when Wilson was more mobile behind a more settled offensive line than he will have come Sunday.
Yes, this will be a different preparation week for Wilson and the Seahawks.
“We’ll help him in practice during the week to make sure we take care of him, but he’s planning on playing,” Carroll said. “There’s no question in his mind he’s not playing. So I’m going to go along with that — until I can’t.”
RAWLS, GRAHAM BETTER
RAWLS, GRAHAM BETTER
Carroll said running back Thomas Rawls (played in 22 82 snaps on offense against Miami) and tight end Jimmy Graham (17) came out of the game feeling good.
Rawls was playing his first regular season game since breaking his ankle in December and Carroll says he “came out great.”
Graham returned from a patellar tendon injury in his knee in November.
Carroll said both will play more against the Rams. Of Graham, the coach said: “Now, we’re ready to go.”
He said he didn’t know if Graham would be limited to a specific number of plays, as he was in the opener.
Carroll said rookie RB C.J. Prosise, the third-down back, cracked a bone in his hand but should be able to continue playing with a cast over it. … The coach said Germain Ifedi (sprained ankle) “has a chance” to play at Los Angeles but the team won’t know until later in the week. Expect Webb to fill-in for the rookie first-round draft pick again at right guard … Carroll on Webb’s opener: “He’ll improve.” … Carroll’s overall assessment of the offense in the opener: “We had some issues.”