Seahawks quiet on how much they will use Marcus Trufant
Cornerback will play in his first game this season after starting the season on the physically unable to perform list.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Seahawks @ Dallas, 10 a.m., Ch. 13
RENTON — Catch-up speed is essential for any cornerback.
But Marcus Trufant isn't just any cornerback.
He's a former Pro Bowler who has made millions out of his ability to accelerate quickly, so it shouldn't be all that much of a surprise that Trufant may do more than serve as Seattle's fifth cornerback when he makes his season debut Sunday in Dallas.
"Every day I asked him, 'How many plays you got in you?' " coach Jim Mora said. "Every day the number is higher."
Trufant was added to Seattle's active roster on Friday, taking the spot that opened up when linebacker Lofa Tatupu was placed on injured reserve after undergoing season-ending surgery.
On Monday, Trufant practiced with Seattle's second-unit cornerbacks.
Wednesday, Mora said he anticipated Trufant would be used as Seattle's fifth defensive back with Ken Lucas and Josh Wilson serving as starters.
By Friday, Mora was a little more coy about plans for Trufant.
"We're going to just see where we are on Sunday," Mora said. "The one thing we don't want to do is come out of that game saying, 'We wish we would have played Tru more.' "
Seattle has waited long enough as it is.
Trufant was unexpectedly absent when training camp began, sidelined by a back injury that worsened in the final week of July. It was diagnosed as a disk injury in August, and he began the regular season on the physically unable to perform list.
By league rules, he was not eligible to begin practicing or playing until after his team's sixth game of the season. He spent that time doing exercises to rehabilitate his back, strengthening his core muscles and then began conditioning work.
"It's not like he's not in shape," Mora said. "He's in shape. It's just it's different when you're playing a football game as opposed to training or practicing."
Trufant missed a total of two games in his first six seasons in the league, and one of those was simply to rest the final game of the 2005 season.
How quickly is he getting back up to speed?
"The more I practice, the more I run around, the better I feel," Trufant said. "Just to get the timing back, it's going to take a little bit, but I think I should be all right."
Just all right? No, he's feeling better than that. It's an ability to get up to speed quickly that defines an elite cornerback.
"I'm feeling pretty good," Trufant said. "I think I can play and go out there and make some plays."
Everything is said to be bigger in Texas. Not Jim Mora's appetite to look around the Cowboys' new $1 billion stadium before Sunday's game. "I couldn't care less about that new stadium," Mora said. "I'm not going to go out early and look at it. I don't care. It's the same exact turf we've got here. That's all that matters."
• Dallas NT Jay Ratliff suffered a bruised knee in Cowboys practice Thursday, did not practice Friday and is listed as questionable. Ratliff had three of Dallas' seven sacks in the Cowboys' 34-9 victory over Seattle last year.
• DE Patrick Kerney participated in the full practice Friday and is listed as probable, which means there is a virtual certainty he will play after recovering from the groin injury he suffered against Arizona.
• LG Rob Sims will start after missing two games with a high ankle sprain. Steve Vallos will serve as the backup interior lineman. Mora was asked who Seattle's backup tackle will be. "Nobody, hopefully," he joked. "Hopefully we make it through the game. We'll deal with that if it comes up."