Seahawks coach Pete Carroll indicates Marshawn Lynch isn’t going anywhere anytime soon
Coach says there’s nothing to reports of a lack of communication with star running back
Seattle Times staff reporter
RENTON — The NFL trade deadline arrives at 1 p.m. Tuesday.
And as they always do this time of year, the Seahawks will explore options that might become available, coach Pete Carroll said Monday.
“You never know,’’ he said.
What he does know, Carroll said, is that Marshawn Lynch isn’t going anywhere.
“Yeah, you’re strong. Go ahead,’’ Carroll said to a reporter Monday when asked if it was safe to say Lynch will still be with the team when the trade deadline passes. “You can go with that.’’
The question was asked in relation to reports over the weekend that the Seahawks “had tired” of Lynch’s act, making it increasingly likely he won’t be with the team in 2015.
Lynch not being back in 2015 has long been speculated locally and was at the heart of Lynch’s training-camp holdout.
Lynch held out eight days as he attempted to get more upfront money, knowing he might not be around for the final season of a four-year deal he signed in 2012 worth as much as $31 million. Seattle can save $7 million against the salary cap by releasing Lynch before June 1, 2015.
Lynch returned to training camp when the Seahawks agreed to guarantee $1.5 million for this season that was previously slated as either roster bonuses, incentives, or money he would get during the 2015 season.
An ESPN report over the weekend, however, suggested the Seahawks might have been entertaining the idea of trading Lynch this year before teammate Derrick Coleman suffered a broken foot before the St. Louis game, which is forcing backup tailback Robert Turbin to take on more fullback duties.
And an NFL.com report said Lynch “does not communicate’’ with team management or Carroll, making it more likely the team will release him after this season.
Those are the latest national reports to indicate trouble in the Seattle locker room, all of which have surfaced since the trade of Percy Harvin on Oct. 17.
And Monday, Carroll made clear it is a topic he is becoming tired of addressing.
“I have nothing to say about that because there is nothing to that,’’ Carroll said of reports of communication issues with Lynch.
“At this point, I don’t think it behooves us to try to respond to all of these things. Our players have told you how they feel, our coaches have told you how we feel about it and we are in a really good place right now. ... there is nothing to that report. I don’t know where that came from.’’
Asked about his communication, Carroll said he talks to Lynch “whenever I need to.’’
The only trade report linking Seattle to a specific player came from NFL.com, which stated the Seahawks were among a handful of teams to have called Tampa Bay about receiver Vincent Jackson.
However, there were later reports Tampa Bay is not shopping Jackson. And his salary — cap hits of more than $12 million a year through 2016 — is prohibitive. Among the reasons Seattle traded Harvin was to clear cap space as well as create playing time for rookie receivers Paul Richardson and Kevin Norwood.
With Coleman done for the year, Seattle also could be in the market for a fullback if it could find one. But fullbacks are in short supply.
Wagner, Miller still out
Injured middle linebacker Bobby Wagner and tight end Zach Miller each made the trip to Carolina to see foot specialists, but Carroll said there is no clearer timeline on when either will return.
Miller has missed four games after having ankle surgery following the Sept. 21 victory over Denver. Wagner has not played since suffering a toe injury against Dallas.
• Carroll said center Max Unger “has a chance’’ to make it back this week, as does cornerback Byron Maxwell. Unger has missed the past three games with a foot injury and Maxwell has missed the past two with a calf injury. Defensive tackle Jordan Hill (ankle) also might return.
• Carroll said linebacker Malcolm Smith has a “mild’’ groin strain but it’s unclear if he will be out this week.
• Offensive lineman James Carpenter missed time Sunday with back spasms but Carroll said he “felt OK’’ Monday.
• Wide receiver/returner Bryan Walters is doing better after missing Sunday with a concussion, but Carroll said he will have to clear the NFL’s concussion protocol. Safety Jeron Johnson also will have to go through the concussion protocol.
Bob Condotta: 206-515-5699 or firstname.lastname@example.org.