RENTON The Seahawks are cooperating with the NFL in answering how and why Russell Wilson returned to last week’s win at Arizona after missing just one play for what the game’s referee intended to be a check for a possible concussion.
Coach Pete Carroll said following Tuesday’s practice for next Monday’s home game against Atlanta that the Seahawks are still in the middle of answering questions from the league. The NFL wants to know more details from coaches, Wilson, referee Walt Anderson and others on what appeared to be a return to play so quick for Wilson it seemimgly couldn’t have followed the league’s protocol to examine players for signs of a possible concussion.
“Yeah, we are cooperating with them, and there is some stuff again (on Wednesday),” Carroll said. “We are just doing the work needed to get all the information.”
Asked if he believes Wilson was examined properly on the Seahawks’ sideline after he briefly went into an evaluation tent behind the bench then returned to the field to finish a third-quarter drive after missing just the one play, Carroll said: “We’ll see what they think about that. I just know what I was told during the game.
“We are going to unveil all of that and talk our way through it, and (involve) the referee and all that, and we’ll figure it out. ...We should know more in a couple of days, I think.
Carroll refused to answer if he was surprised how quickly Wilson returned to the game, saying the team is “still getting the information.”
The NFL sent to The News Tribune Friday morning a statement that said the league is starting “a thorough review” of whether the Seahawks following NFL concussion protocol before Wilson re-entered the game.
“A thorough review is underway,” the NFL said in its statement. “According to the policy jointed developed by the NFL and NFLPA, if the Concussion Protocol is not properly followed the club is subject to discipline.”
The Seahawks possibly could be facing a six-figure fine from the NFL, if the league determines the team did not follow the league’s concussion protocol with Wilson.
Wilson got hit in the chin by the helmet of Arizona’s Karlos Dansby after throwing a pass in the third quarter Thursday night. Referee Anderson flagged Dansby for roughing the passer.
Then Anderson--and presumably the league-appointed concussion monitor persons stationed in the press box and on each sideline--saw Wilson adjusting his helmet and appearing to feel the side of his head and face. Anderson sent Wilson to the Seahawks’ sideline. After the game the quarterback acknowledged it was to get checked out for any signs of a concussion.
“I got smacked in the jaw pretty good. I wasn’t concussed or anything. I felt completely clear. I was just trying to move my jaw,” Wilson said after the game he finished. “I was laying on the ground for a second trying to move my jaw, and I think Walt thought maybe I was injured.
“I told him I was good, but he said, ‘You’ve got to come off the field.’”
Wilson did. For one play. Austin Davis entered for his second snap this season--the other was a kneel down to end the win over Houston two games ago. Davis handed the ball off to C.J. Prosise. Then Wilson re-entered the game and finished the drive.
After the drive, Seahawks team doctor Edward Khalfayan stood in front of Wilson on the sideline in front of the team’s bench. With the quarterback’s helmet off, the doctor held each side of Wilson’s face along the jaw-bone line for an evaluation. Wilson then went back into the tent for more evaluation. That tent stay was also brief; he was out of it after maybe a minute or so. Wilson went back to sitting on the bench reviewing his electronic tablet showing Arizona’s defensive alignments.
“Walt made the smart decision, but I was fine. I was 100-percent fine,” Wilson said. “We finally went over the whole concussion stuff and went through every question you could imagine.”