RENTON – Rookie quarterback Russell Wilson will have a new toy when he makes his first pro start on Friday at Kansas City.
Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Wednesday that the team’s No. 1 receiver, Sidney Rice, will make his exhibition debut against the Chiefs.
Rice did not play in Seattle’s first two exhibition games and had been limited in contact drills during training camp because he was still recovering from offseason surgery on both shoulders.
But the sixth-year veteran has been full-go this week and has taken a couple of hard shots from Seattle’s first-team defense without suffering any ill effects.
“We’re anxious to see him get out there,” Carroll said. “He’s had a fantastic process getting back. He’s done everything we’ve asked him to do. He’s practicing really, really well. And so we’ll get him a little bit of (playing time) just to break the ice on that one.”
The 25-year-old Rice hasn’t played since he suffered concussions in back-to-back games in November. He was placed on the season-ending injured reserve list in December.
Rice finished the 2011 season with 32 receptions for 484 yards and two touchdowns in his first year in Seattle.
Rice’s appearance on the field should help a first-team offense whose longest pass play from scrimmage has been a 14-yard connection from Matt Flynn to tight end Zach Miller.
“We talked all in the offseason on how we were going to do it, and he is ahead of schedule,” Carroll said of Rice’s recovery. “He’s applied himself so well and has done a great job in the weight room. He’s never been pumped like this before. He’s feeling really confident out there, and we are all looking forward to it.”
SURGERY FOR LEWIS
Carroll said cornerback Roy Lewis, a special teams standout, has a knee injury that will require surgery, making his availability for the team’s season opener uncertain.
“He’s going to get it worked on, and we have to see,” Carroll said. “And it’s on his other knee, but we won’t know what it means until they go in there and fix him up.
“It’s kind of been an ongoing process.”
Lewis, a former standout at the University of Washington, spent the first six weeks of the 2011 season on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list because of a different knee injury. He played in 10 games after he was activated and finished with a career-high 20 tackles.
Lewis has been a fixture as Seattle’s nickel back the past two seasons, but Marcus Trufant has been filling that role while Lewis has been on the mend.
Quarterback Matt Flynn took limited reps in practice Wednesday. Carroll said that the Seahawks wanted to rest Flynn’s arm a little bit heading into this weekend. “We just wanted to keep him out for one day of throwing before the weekend, so we did that,” Carroll said. Carroll added that he doesn’t expect the issue to affect Flynn’s availability for Friday’s game. Miller (concussion) is expected to play Friday, Carroll said. Center Max Unger (calf) and cornerback Coye Francies (head) also returned to practice and should be available for the Kansas City game. Carroll said offensive lineman John Moffitt (elbow) should be ready to resume practicing next week. Fullback Michael Robinson (toe), tight end Cameron Morrah (toe), defensive end Jason Jones (knee), defensive tackle Pep Levingston (knee), receiver Doug Baldwin (hamstring), cornerback Ron Parker (knee), running back Marshawn Lynch (back), linebacker Allen Bradford (hip) and linebacker Matt McCoy (knee) did not practice. Cornerback Walter Thurmond (leg) and offensive lineman James Carpenter (knee) remain on the PUP email@example.com