RENTON, Wash. – The biggest component of Seattle’s run defense also is a rather large question mark for the game Sunday in Chicago.
But defensive end Red Bryant, hampered by a foot injury, isn’t the only Seahawk whose status is in doubt.
Cornerback Marcus Trufant has been diagnosed with a hamstring injury that leaves him unlikely to play while receiver Sidney Rice’s calf muscle tightened during practice Friday, forcing him to sit out the final third of the workout. He is listed as questionable.
“We’ve just got to see what happens,” coach Pete Carroll said of Rice. “We think he’s OK.”
The Seahawks have been one of the NFL’s healthiest teams this season. Receiver Ben Obomanu is the only player who has been placed on injured reserve since the regular season began. This week, Seattle faces more uncertainty due to injury than in any other game this season.
The Seahawks have three starters listed as questionable: Rice, Bryant and linebacker Leroy Hill. Trufant is doubtful after he was diagnosed with a hamstring injury after practice Thursday.
“We’re really surprised that that popped up,” Carroll said. “It’s going to be hard for him to get back from that.”
Cornerback Walter Thurmond will be active for the first time this season, returning from a broken leg he suffered last season and reinjured in March. Thurmond is likely to take Trufant’s spot when the team uses its nickel formations that call for five defensive backs.
Of the three starters listed as questionable, Hill has the best chance to play. He was able to finish the game last week in Miami despite suffering an ankle injury, and while he didn’t participate in practice this week, he did run at full speed Friday.
“He had a legitimate workout,” Carroll said. “We’ll check him out (today) and again all the way up to game day.”
Replacing Bryant is a little tricky.
A defensive end, he is critical to the team’s base defense. While he hasn’t missed a game since 2010, the sore foot has bothered him for the past month.
The Seahawks could move Alan Branch from defensive tackle to Bryant’s position at end.