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Seahawks to release Chris Matthews

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According to a report from Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports, the Seattle Seahawks are set to release wide receiver Chris Matthews. Matthews is best known for his 109 yard receiving performance in Super Bowl 49.

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This news is a bit surprising since the Seahawks have lost both Ricardo Lockette and Paul Richardson to injuries in the last two games. Matthews would have been in line to pick up additional playing time.

The Seahawks have just three healthy receivers on the roster at the moment: Doug Baldwin, Jermaine Kearse, and Tyler Lockett. That will certainly change before the team takes the field on Sunday against the 49ers.

The Seahawks have three receivers on the practice squad: BJ Daniels, Kasen Williams and Kevin Smith. Daniels has been the guy that has been brought up for playing time in the past, so it would make some sense to predict that he’d get that chance again.

On the other hand, Kasen is one guy of that trio that can replace what Matthews did on special teams. Matthews was used as a gunner on punt coverage, which was the same role that Williams was used in during the preseason.

Special teams might actually be the biggest reason for this move. As one of the team’s two gunners on punt coverage, Matthews bares some of the responsibility for the Seahawks giving up the league’s worst average punt returns to their opponents.

Smith and Daniels are returners on special teams. That isn’t a skill that the Seahawks current need with Lockett on roster. That doesn’t mean that those two won’t get the call, but it does make it more likely that Williams will be the guy.

On that same note, Jeremy Lane is set to return off the PUP list this week as well. He has been a gunner in the past, so perhaps the Seahawks view him as the replacement for Matthews on special teams.

Obviously we’ll have to wait and see. There should be an update from the team soon.