Seahawks Insider Blog

Okung suffers ankle injury, could miss season opener

The news involving rookie offensive tackle Russell Okung was not good after tonight’s game.

Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said the Oklahoma State product suffered a sprained ankle.

Okung injured his ankle on the first series of the game and went to the locker room to be evaluated by team trainers, never returning to the field.

Carroll said X-rays on Okung’s ankle came back negative, but he still needs to have an MRI on the injury.

Carroll would not rule out the possibility of a high-ankle sprain, which usually takes longer to heal.

“It’s going to be a bit,” Carroll said. “It’s a legitimate ankle sprain. So we’ll see how it goes.”

The Seahawks had to deal with rash of injuries along the offensive line last season, cycling through four offensive tackles as they attempted to replace Walter Jones. So Carroll understands the important of getting Okung back in a timely manner.

“It’s pretty significant,” Carroll said about the Okung injury. “We made it as big of a priority as we can make it in getting him. We’ll have to see how it goes. (Mansifeld) Wrotto played the whole game just about. We’ll see how we did and all. That’s a big loss if he can’t come back. We put a lot of time and effort in getting this guy right. He’s done everything we can ask of him, and we’ll see how it is and how ling it’s going to take.”

Asked if it could be a couple weeks for Okung, Carroll had this to say: “It could be. We don’t know that yet. We’ll figure it out. We don’t know how he is about coming back, so we have to wait and see what happens here.”

Carroll said Kentwan Balmer injured his ankle and knee in the fourth quarter, but that X-rays came back negative.

Kelly Jennings hyper-extended his left elbow, but returned to the game.

Carroll said Okung, Balmer and Jennings all will have MRI’s on Sunday to better determine the extent of their injuries.

Thomas struggles

Rookie safety Earl Thomas had his struggles tonight.

In Green Bay’s first drive of the game, Thomas bit hard on quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ play-action fake and was beaten over the top of the defense by receiver Greg Jennings for a 56-yard gain.

“He thought he had the play made, but the ball was amazingly thrown,” Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said. “And he made a great catch as well. He was there. We could have played it better. There should have been two guys on it.” On Green Bay’s second drive of the game, Thomas and veteran Lawyer Milloy appeared to get crossed up, with both players covering the middle of the defense, leaving tight end Jermichael Finley wide open in the end zone for a 12-yard score.

Carroll took blame for the miscommunication on the field, saying the coaches didn’t get the call in on time on the headphones. Washington shines

Running back Leon Washington got his shot in the second quarter, carrying four times for 19 yards, including an 11-yard scamper for a score.

Washington said he never doubted he would make it back to the field.

“Not one bit,” Washington said. “Because first of all I have the ultimate faith, and second of all I have faith in my preparation. How hard I work in practice, coming out to the game if you take care of business in that aspect it becomes easier in the game.”

Carroll said Justin Forsett starting today was part of the team’s planned rotation at running back, and that Washington will get his chance to start during preseason play.

“We decided that somewhere months ago about how we were going to do this in the first couple games,” Carroll said. “Just give these guys a chance to compete, and that’s exactly what we’re doing. There’s a good chance that Leon will start next week, and we’ll see how he does in that role. That’s what our plan was, to give these guys a chance to go with the first group and show us what they’ve got.”

Carroll also said his team has got to run the ball better.

“It’s a concern because we have to get it rolling,” he said. “We’ve taken a hit with Russell, and we’re going to have to figure this thing out.”

Green Bay safety Derrick Martin was ejected from the game in the first half for throwing a punch at Seattle defensive back Kennard Cox.