The struggling 2-4 Seahawks don’t, at first glance, look lucky.
But they sure have been fortunate in realms including and beyond football, avoiding what could have been in two car crashes involving running backs over a span of six days.
Coach Pete Carroll said following practice Wednesday that his team will have All-Pro middle linebacker Bobby Wagner back anchoring what’s been a scattered, miscommunicating defense Thursday when it faces Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers (2-4) in Santa Clara. Wagner missed last week’s loss to Carolina with a strained pectoral muscle.
Carroll also said Seattle is fortunate to have re-signed veteran center Lemuel Jeanpierre on Tuesday because starter Patrick Lewis will not play at San Francisco because of an ankle injury that had him in a walking boot for part of this week. Drew Nowak, who had made his first five NFL starts before Lewis replaced him last week against Carolina, returns to the lineup by default.
Most of all, the Seahawks are fortunate no one was injured in another car crash involving one of its veteran players.
Carroll said Fred Jackson talked with his teammates Wednesday “and did a good job addressing it and owning up to it” a day after the 34-year-old running back crashed his 2016 Corvette through a stop sign just outside team headquarters here. The impact carried the signpost a couple dozen feet across Lake Washington Boulevard, which is often a busy street at the time of this accident — just before 5 p.m. Tuesday.
Renton Police Department Commander David Leibman said Wednesday that Jackson received a citation for inattentive driving and was fined $175.
“Fred lost control of his car, and he was ticketed for that,” Carroll said.
Asked if he was confident no other Seahawks players were involved in the incident Carroll said, “Yes. Absolutely.”
“We are very fortunate nobody was hurt, and we’re lucky in that regard.”
Jackson did not sustained any injuries in the crash. He practiced Wednesday and Carroll said he will play Thursday.
The coach said he was “disappointed” Jackson’s incident came six days after fullback Derrick Coleman was arrested and spent a day and a half in jail on investigation of felony charges for vehicular assault and hit-and-run. Coleman’s crash of his Dodge Ram pickup into a Honda Civic from behind in Bellevue sent the Honda upside down onto a retaining wall and its driver to the hospital for what that city’s police chief said was “serious but not life-threatening injuries.”
The King County prosecutor’s office is deciding whether to charge Coleman and is waiting for the return of toxicology tests.
The Seahawks lifted Coleman’s suspension this week, but team doctors found he has a concussion from his crash. He won’t play at San Francisco, so former 49er Will Tukuafu will make his second straight start at fullback.
“We talked about that today to the whole group,” Carroll said. “How that happened in such a short time, I don’t know. Everybody was — and Fred talked to the team as well — just to give everybody the heads-up so we make sure that we are doing the right thing and not making any more mistakes.”
Carroll said All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman will start against the 49ers. Sherman missed practices this week because “he had a little thing in his ankle that he had to get a break on.”
DE Frank Clark and fellow rookie and reserve cornerback CB Tye Smith will play after missing last weekend’s loss to Carolina. … Carroll said the team will activate second-year WR Paul Richardson off the physically unable to perform list next week before the game at Dallas Nov. 1. Richardson tore knee ligaments in January. He could have returned to practice this week but the coach said that wouldn’t have made much sense with the short week between games. … Carroll thinks Lewis has a good chance be return to start at center against Dallas. … Nickelback Marcus Burley will not play while recovering from surgery to repair his broken thumb. Carroll think Burley will be able to play at Dallas. … Reserve LB and special-teams player Brock Coyle had knee surgery on Tuesday. The team put him on its injured-reserve list with a designation to return. Each NFL team gets one use of that list per season. It means Coyle could return to practice in six weeks and games in eight weeks, which for Coyle would be Seattle’s home game Dec. 20 against Cleveland, the third-to-last game of the regular season.