Could Seahawks shuffle line?

  • By John Boyle Herald Writer
  • Tuesday, September 6, 2011 12:01am
  • Sports

RENTON — The Seattle Seahawks made their biggest splashes in free agency trying to upgrade their offense.

With the season opener against the San Francisco 49ers less than a week away, the status of two of those additions remains in doubt. Left guard Robert Gallery, who sprained his knee in Friday’s preseason game, sat out Monday’s practice, as did receiver Sidney Rice, who has been battling a shoulder injury throughout training camp.

“He’s got a sprained knee, and we’ll just have to see how it goes day to day,” Carroll said of Gallery. “We’ll watch him carefully, and he’s hopeful that he can make it back by the weekend. We’ll have to wait and see.”

If Gallery can’t play, one of the options to replace him is apparently first-round pick James Carpenter, who up until Monday has strictly worked at right tackle, where he is projected as a starter. Carpenter saw action at guard, a position he played some in college, as well as his usually tackle spot Monday. The Seahawks also have Paul McQuistan and Lemuel Jeanpierre as options at guard.

“You have to develop all the flexibility that you can,” Carroll said. “We’ll be in the game with seven or eight offensive linemen, so guys have to play multiple spots. So we did move some guys around today. (Carpenter) did play guard a little bit today.”

Carpenter, who spent most of his time playing left tackle at Alabama, said it’s not too big of an adjustment working at left guard.

“I’m pretty comfortable, because I played on the left side my whole life until I got here, so it’s pretty comfortable for me,” he said.

Carpenter has been battling Breno Giacomini for the starting job at right tackle, so the Seahawks have an option at that position should they decide to use Carpenter at guard.

As for Rice, Carroll said the decision on whether he will play Sunday is likely to be made later in the week. Having just given positive outlooks on several injured players who are expected back this week, Carroll was less optimistic when asked about Rice.

“Sidney is a little bit slower than that,” Carroll said. “We’ll wait later in the week to know what’s going on with him.”

The good news for Seattle’s offense is that left tackle Russell Okung is expected back after missing the past three preseason games with an ankle injury. Okung practiced last week and went through pregame warm-ups Friday, but was held out of the game.

“He looks good, he’s ready to go,” Carroll said. “… He practiced enough last week to let us know that he would be ready this week. He worked really hard in pregame the other night, he was dying to play, but we wouldn’t put him in, we wanted a few more days. He practiced full go today, and he’s ready to go for this game.”

Also expected back for the opener are receiver Mike Williams (toe), linebacker David Hawthorne (knee) and strong safety Kam Chancellor (foot).

Notes

The Seahawks named captains Monday, which were voted on by the players: quarterback Tarvaris Jackson (offense), cornerback Marcus Trufant (defense) and Leon Washington and Michael Robinson as co-captains on special teams. … WR Isaiah Stanback, who was placed on injured reserve Saturday, is no longer with the team, Carroll said.

Herald Writer John Boyle: jboyle@heraldnet.com. For more Seahawks coverage, check out the Seahawks blog at heraldnet.com/seahawksblog

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