Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll seemed like he just wanted things done and to have no distractions heading into Week 17. The team made a bunch of moves including placing two players on injured reserve, releasing another, announcing one player is officially out for Sunday's game versus the Pittsburgh Steelers, and elevating a couple of players to the active roster.
Each move likely made the team better for the final two games of the regular season. Plus, should Seattle win those final two games, they would be in the playoffs. Carroll seems to have been able to get the team refocused since Week 15 just when the season appeared on the brink of collapse.
Of course, Week 17 is not going to be easy. Even though the Steelers have injury concerns of their own, coach Mike Tomlin will always have his team prepared to play hard. Plus, Pittsburgh blew out a Cincinnati Bengals team that was playing fairly well before Week 16.
Seattle Seahawks shake things up a bit ahead of Week 17
Seattle places safety Jamal Adams and receiver/returner Dee Eskridge on IR
Something happened between Jamal Adams (knee) and the team at some point late in the season, one might guess. Adams has had a tumultuous season both on the field - he gets lost in coverage and gets caught guessing blitz when he just needs to play a receiver's route - and slightly off the field - his notorious social media spat with a New York Jets reporter and also screaming at medical personnel during Week 4.
But Adams leaving the stadium (apparently) after being told he was out ahead of Week 15 was likely one of the last things he will do with the team. Pete Carroll values a team-first attititude and Adams' action was certainly not that. Plus, the team appears better without him on the field.
Eskridge (ribs) has rarely played in his three seasons with Seattle (24 out of a possible 49 games) due to injury (or suspension) and he simply needs to be released before the 2024 season. He flashed an ability to return kicks in Week 12 against the San Francisco 49ers but was injured during the game and hasn't played since. Eskridge never offered much productivity as a receiver. His being placed on IR simply opens a spot for someone who might actually help the team.
Frank Clark is released
One might wonder if Frank Clark simply doesn't want to play football anymore. He hasn't been very good during the regular season in a few years, was terrible with the Denver Broncos earlier in 2023, and after signing with the Seahawks after the Broncos released him, Clark wasn't good (no sacks or quarterback hits in six games for Seattle). He is only 30 years old but whether he plays again or not is in question.
Jordyn Brooks moved from questionable to out for Week 17
I hope Brooks is re-signed this coming offseason and is a Seahawks linebacker for several more years, but it made no sense to risk him to further injury in Week 17 after he hurt his ankle in Week 16. Brooks needs rest for the injury to heal. Should Seattle make the playoffs getting Brooks back for that is more important than having him limp around versus the Steelers.
Seahawks elevations and additions
While Seattle placed Adams and Eskridge on injured reserve and released Clark opening three roster spots, the Seahawks elevated nose tackle Austin Faoliu and cornerback Kelvin Joseph, and signed linebacker Patrick O'Connell, safety Ty Okada, and offensive tackle Jake Curhan from the practice squad. Faoliu should take up a lot of space in the middle of the defensive line and help stop the Steelers from running the ball efficiently. That's the hope anyway.