James Carpenter, Seattle’s first round draft pick last year, will be making his triumphant return this Sunday after coming off a serve knee injury last November.
The second year offensive linemen couldn’t be happier to finally be making his 2012 début back in the newly modified Nike jerseys.
“I’m very excited to get back,” Carpenter said. “I thought I was going to end up on the PUP.”
If he had been thrown on the physically-unable-to-perform list, Carpenter would be spending the first six weeks of the season on the sidelines, which would then be followed by a three-week rehab and practice to see if he could make it back on the field or needed to be placed on IR.
Lucky for him and the Seahawks, that will not happening.
After starting his rookie season playing right tackle in the first units line, Carpenter is jumping over to left guard where he had been practiced all week. John Moffitt is doubtful for Sundays game, after aggravating is own knee. With Moffitt out, Paul McQuistan will be playing in right guard while Carpenter takes McQuistan’s spot on the O-line. This will also allow rookie J.R. Sweezy to get the starting nod as an option if Moffitt has to sit.
The depth of the offensive line this year was a huge question during the start of the 2011 season. As the year grow old, coach Tom Cable and coach Pete Carroll found that there was a lot of talent in the ranks who had the ability to jump from one side of the line to the next. This made for easier adjustments and less panic if a player like Carpenter had to sit and rest an injury for a longer period of time. Though it’s good for the team, the players obviously do not agree.
“I didn’t want to go on the PUP,” Carpenter said. “I worked hard this whole offseason trying not to get on the PUP. That was like my motivation.”
His hard work paid off. Though it is still unclear how many snaps he will see, in hopes to limit aggravating his knee again, it’s a comforting thing to see him back on the field . Rookie quarterback Russell Wilson will be happy to see the offense keep the new look Ram’s defense off him as long as they can to come up with some big plays.