The Seahawks placed rookie receiver D’Wayne Eskridge on the PUP list to start training camp. This likely affects the first part of the 2021 season. The problem is where Eskridge is injured. It is his big toe and foot injuries, especially those digits at the end of one’s feet, affect the performance of a speed guy even more than they would an offensive lineman, per se.
Coach Pete Carroll said, “…we’re just making sure he doesn’t overdo it early.” I am not a doctor but a lingering toe injury that keeps a rookie out of the start of training camp likely means the injury will only heal after an indefinite amount of time. Yes, Eskridge can return at any time but any time missed for a rookie receiver in a fairly complicated offense only hurts their learning curve.
Remember how tight end Colby Parkinson hurt his foot last offseason after being drafted by the Seahawks and then missed a good chunk of the year and was never really productive? It isn’t because Parkinson was injured so much. His injury kept him from getting valuable reps so he could prepare for live game action.
Seahawks place D’Wayne Eskridge on the PUP list
Yes, maybe Parkinson’s injury was more severe as his foot was broken, but a big toe is extremely worrisome. This is the point at which a receiver pushes off to get a quick burst. For a receiver like Eskridge, who is smaller and absolutely needs all of his quickness to get off the line of scrimmage and beat his defender swiftly, a big toe injury could linger for a very long time.
Eskridge is going to make the team, of course, and he will eventually be the third option at receiver. But if I was a betting person (which I am not because I tend to lose when I have bet), I would think by week 6 that Freddie Swain has a lot more targets than Eskridge. Swain isn’t a bad receiver but Eskridge is a second-round pick that surely the Seahawks have high hopes for.
Or maybe this is as good of a time as any to be reaching out to the agent for Josh Gordon. No Gordon isn’t allowed to play in the NFL yet, but he might soon. Having Gordon on the team as Russell Wilson’s third option is very good. Probably even better than Eskridge because at this point who knows when Eskridge will wear a Seahawks uniform in a game that matters.