Seahawks' Schneider expects Rice to be ready for season
After spending the past three seasons with the Seahawks, Rice was released by Seattle following the Super Bowl in a salary-related move. He was scheduled to make $8.5 million in base salary for 2014 before being released in late February.
But Rice and the Seahawks remained in contact and he was brought back on a $1 million, one-year deal earlier this month. He received medical clearance to participate in football-related activities in the middle of April.
Rice appeared in eight games for Seattle last season with 15 catches for 231 yards and three touchdowns before being placed on injured reserve after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in October against St. Louis. If he can return to health and productivity, Rice could quell one of Seattle's questions about depth at wide receiver heading into next season.
"When we released him it was hard but we explained the landscape to Sidney and his representative and we stayed in contact with him all the way through it," Schneider said.
Schneider touched on a number of topics during his pre-draft availability.
Schneider said that Terrelle Pryor was acquired from Oakland with the idea that he'd compete as a quarterback. Seattle sent a seventh-round pick to the Raiders in exchange for Pryor. There was a thought he could be a dual-threat player for Seattle, but Schneider said Pryor is learning the quarterback position.
Schneider said Seattle knew it wouldn't be able to get Pryor off waivers, leading to the discussions of the trade. The value of what Pryor could bring was likely higher than what they could get from the seventh-round pick.
"Right now he's learning the quarterback position and (another position) isn't even an option," Schneider said.
Schneider did not know if wide receiver Doug Baldwin would sign his second-round tender as a restricted free agent. Friday is the deadline for restricted free agents to field offers from other teams. He added the team has not made a decision on whether to pick up the fifth-year option on former first-round pick James Carpenter.
Schneider also declined to comment on whether strong safety Kam Chancellor or left tackle Russell Okung had surgery in the offseason.
Left to be determined is if recently hired consultant Jeff Ireland will have a role with the club following the draft. The former Miami general manager was hired by Seattle earlier this week to be another voice in the draft room. But Schneider said it was too early to know if there would be a spot for Ireland with the team beyond the draft.
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