Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said Monday the possibility of getting receiver Doug Baldwin back this week would be a “long shot.”
Those odds have seemingly improved significantly as Baldwin returned to full participation in practice on Thursday just two weeks after suffering a high ankle sprain against the San Francisco 49ers.
“He looks better than we expected coming into the week,” Carroll said Wednesday. “I don’t know if that’s going to happen, but we’ll see. That’s good news, at least he’s competitive.”
49ers safety Dashon Goldson landed on Baldwin’s ankle while Baldwin was engaged with a defender on a punt return during the Seahawks 13-6 loss to the 49ers on Thursday night two weeks ago. Baldwin was unable to practice all last week but returned to limited duty on Wednesday. Baldwin getting a full work load Thursday is a positive sign for the Seahawks and a receiver group dealing with a myriad of injuries.
Ben Obomanu was placed on injured reserve on Tuesday with a sprained wrist and the team promoted undrafted rookie Jermaine Kearse from the practice squad to take his place. Braylon Edwards was a late scratch from last Sunday’s game in Detroit after his knee swelled up before the game. Edwards has yet to practice this week.
If Baldwin can play Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings, it takes pressure off the newly promoted Kearse from having to contribute right way. If Baldwin and Edwards can’t go, Seattle would likely go into Sunday with just four healthy active receivers. The Seahawks do have receivers Phil Bates and Lavasier Tuinei on the practice squad they could turn to if necessary.
For the season, Baldwin has 11 catches for 149 yards and a touchdown in six games.