Doug Baldwin’s battered, “savage” body finally caught up to him.
The Pro Bowl wide receiver missed the Seahawks’ home game Monday night against Minnesota because of a second groin injury in three weeks. The team on Saturday listed Baldwin questionable to play. He was on the field in warm-up attire with a football in his hands two hours before kickoff but the Seahawks then announced he was inactive.
It’s only the third game Baldwin has missed in 6 1/2 seasons.
Baldwin, 30, played through a pulled groin Nov. 25 at Carolina, and coach Pete Carroll couldn’t believe he was able to do that. After he had five catches in that win, Baldwin was asked how he was able to play all but a handful of snaps on a pulled groin.
“I’m a savage,” Baldwin said at his locker in Charlotte, N.C.
He’s had injuries to both knees that kept him out of the second and third games this season, in September. Since then he played nine consecutive games through knee, elbow and groin pain.
Before he missed Seattle’s week-two loss at Chicago this season he had played in 100 consecutive games in the regular season and playoffs since 2012. That was his second year in the league, after signing with the Seahawks as an undrafted free agent out of Stanford in 2011.
The Seahawks were also without Pro Bowl veteran K.J. Wright again. He was inactive for the 10th time in 13 games following knee surgery in August. Wright, 29, is in the final year of his contract, and his future in Seattle is cloudy, at best.
D.J. Fluker, the best run blocker on the offensive line, was inactive Monday night because of his first-degree hamstring strain. Jordan Simmons made his second NFL start, for Fluker at right guard. The Seahawks claimed Simmons off waivers in early September, then gave Oakland’s undrafted rookie free agent in 2017 his first NFL start in October at the Los Angeles Rams. That was also for the injured Fluker.
The Seahawks are choosing Simmons over Ethan Pocic, their second-round draft choice in 2017, to fill in for Fluker because Simmons is stronger and more stout than the taller, more athletic Pocic. When Simmons started for Fluker Nov. 11, the Seahawks ran for 273 yards against the Rams.
The rest of Seattle’s inactives Monday: fullback Tre Madden, reserve cornerback Kalan Reed, backup center Joey Hunt and defensive end Branden Jackson.