With lead running back Marshawn Lynch out for Sunday’s game at Cincinnati and third-down back Fred Jackson iffy to play, the Seahawks on Saturday signed rookie running back Rod Smith from their practice squad onto the active roster.
Seattle made roster room by placing oft-injured cornerback Tharold Simon on injured reserve because of a dislocated toe that had limited him to appearing for only a few plays this season. That was in the second game at Green Bay.
This is the second time in three NFL seasons with Seattle that Simon’s season has ended on IR.
“He dislocated his second toe. His nature has given him a toe that’s got some issues,” coach Pete Carroll said of the third-year cornerback who played extensively in February’s Super Bowl after nickel back Jeremy Lane got hurt in the third quarter against New England. “ He’s had surgery on his other foot. Same toe, same situation.”
Premium content for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
The Seahawks drafted Simon in the third round out of LSU in 2013. He has the height, length and physical tools Carroll and defensive coordinator Kris Richard covet in their cover guys. But last season, his first playing after foot injuries wrecked his rookie season of 2013, Simon was prone to bonehead penalties at awful times. Then he had shoulder surgery following the Super Bowl in which New England’s Tom Brady targeted him for two touchdown passes. He just can’t stay on the field.
Smith, signed this offseason as an undrafted free agent from Ohio State, impressed coaches with his physical running in training camp and preseason games. He joins fellow undrafted rookie Thomas Rawls as the only healthy tailbacks on the roster for Sunday’s game against the undefeated Bengals.
Carroll said on Friday the team thinks Jackson, 34, can play at Cincinnati six days after he sustained a high-ankle sprain, which is remarkable. Jackson is in Ohio with the team, unlike Lynch. “Rest Mode” stayed back and will miss his second consecutive game because of a strained hamstring.
Carroll said the team expects Lynch to play next weekend when the Seahawks host Carolina.