Seahawks are hoping for best with injured players
The Seahawks have listed seven players as questionable for Sunday's game at Oakland, including two cornerbacks. Coach Pete Carroll said the Seahawks will wait as close as they can to game time before making decisions about who is able to play.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Seattle @ Oakland, 1:15 p.m.,
RENTON — Coach Pete Carroll was asked about the health of his cornerbacks after practice, and he looked across the field to search for the most up-to-date answer.
Kelly Jennings ran along the far sideline at Seattle's indoor practice facility, testing the injured hamstring that has kept him from practicing the past two weeks.
"Kelly's out here now, working out to see how far he has come back," Carroll said.
That's just one of the questions Carroll left open as the Seahawks head to Oakland for Sunday's game. They listed seven players as questionable on the injury report Friday, meaning their chances of playing are estimated at 50-50.
That includes Jennings as well as his backup Walter Thurmond, who has not practiced since suffering a head injury in last week's game. If neither can play, former Husky Roy Lewis is expected to start.
"We've been knocked a little bit there," Carroll said of the cornerbacks.
Seattle hasn't ruled anyone out for the game. Not rookie left tackle Russell Okung, who suffered an ankle injury last week. Not defensive tackle Brandon Mebane, who has missed two games with a calf injury.
But Carroll wasn't making any optimistic projections, either.
"We just have to figure it out when we get to game time," he said.
In cards, it's called a poker face. In the NFL, it's called an injury report, and Carroll wasn't giving away any clues about who might be ready.
"We'll hang all the way to the bitter end to figure all that out," Carroll said.
The answer to that question will be particularly important at cornerback, where Thurmond played so capably in place of Jennings last week.
"We're taking all of the precautions during the week to make sure we're doing the right thing by him," Carroll said. "To make sure he's safe."
Lewis has been a special-teams mainstay and used primarily as a fifth defensive back in obvious passing situations.
He has prepared this week to start.
"As far as I'm concerned right now, I've got to concentrate on playing at least first through third down on defense," Lewis said.
Nate Ness and Kennard Cox are the other two considerations at cornerback. Marcus Trufant is the starter on the other side.
Tyler Polumbus is expected to start at left tackle, the position he played the first three games while Okung was recovering from a high ankle sprain on his right leg. Okung suffered a similar injury to his left ankle last week, and while the sprain wasn't considered as serious, it is very ambitious to think he could return right away from an injury that generally takes weeks to heal.
One player the Seahawks will have in uniform is Chester Pitts, who did not play in Seattle's first six games as he continued his recovery from knee surgery.
"Chester had by far his best week," Carroll said. "He practiced right with everybody else, full flight. I would love to see him play in this game."
Pitts will be in uniform, Carroll said, indicating he will be among the 45 players active for the game. Ben Hamilton remains the starter at left guard.
• The seven Seahawks listed as questionable: Okung, Mebane, Jennings, Thurmond, LB Matt McCoy (hamstring), WR Brandon Stokley (oblique), FB Michael Robinson (hamstring).
• Three Raiders are ruled out for the game: DT John Henderson (foot), WR Louis Murphy (chest) and WR Chaz Schilens (knee).