November 29, 1997 in Sports

Seahawks Struggle With Numbers

From Wire Reports

To determine his 45-man active roster for Sunday’s game against the Atlanta Falcons, Seattle Seahawks coach Dennis Erickson had to use his calculator.

“We might not have 45 (healthy) players to suit up,” Erickson said.

The calculator was needed because the Seahawks are less than $10,000 from bumping the salary cap. Erickson had to wait until Friday afternoon to see if he was going to be able to keep 53 players on a battered roster that lists seven players who will be unable to play in the Falcons game.

Defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy (broken leg), cornerback Shawn Springs (broken thumb), fullback Reggie Brown (knee) and punter Rick Tuten (pelvis) were placed on the inactive list Friday. Right tackle Howard Ballard (broken forearm), right guard Derrick Graham (neck stinger) and cornerback Jeremy Lincoln (ankle) also are not expected to play.

“I’m spending more time in the training room than I am in my office,” Erickson said.

Wide receiver Joey Galloway returned to practice after missing two days because of a foot injury. Galloway is expected to start, but if the injury bothers him by Sunday morning, the Seahawks may start James McKnight.

Fred Thomas starts for the injured Lincoln, whom Erickson officially declared as doubtful.

Strong safety Bennie Blades practiced again and appears to be ready to take a role in the nickel pass defense. Jay Bellamy will be the starter at strong safety.

The Seahawks juggled the roster by cutting cornerback Dexter Seigler and re-signing offensive lineman Greg Bloedorn from the practice squad.

Tyree Davis has officially replaced Ronnie Harris as the punt returner. Steve Broussard remains the deep receiver on kickoff returns.

Springs had the cast off his broken right thumb, giving Erickson some encouragement that he may try to practice next week. Springs is scheduled to return Dec. 14, in time for the Oakland Raiders game.

“He’s got a chance to practice next week,” Erickson said. “They’ll look at the X-rays Monday and sees how it heals. It’s not the cast he’d have to wear that’s the determination; it’s the healing process.”

Mack returns to Bengals

Rookie safety Tremain Mack is back with the Cincinnati Bengals after a jail term and rehabilitation therapy for drunken driving. But the Bengals still haven’t said whether Mack will play again this season.

The Bengals (4-8) have four games remaining, including Sunday’s contest in Philadelphia.

Mack was arrested Oct. 25 for driving under the influence of alcohol and with a suspended license. He spent three nights in jail before getting released on appeal. For the past month, Mack was at an undisclosed treatment center.

xxxx SUNDAY ON TV 10 a.m.: Jets at Bills (NBC) 1 p.m.: Falcons at Seahawks (Fox) 1 p.m.: Dolphins at Raiders (NBC) 5 p.m.: Broncos at Chargers (ESPN)

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