By John Boyle Herald Writer
RENTON — After missing the first week of training camp, running back Marshawn Lynch returned to the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday.
Lynch, who was holding out hoping to re-do the remaining two years of his contract, arrived at team headquarters not long after his teammates finished their sixth practice of training camp, assuring that the Seahawks will again have the Pro Bowl player in 2014.
Lynch did not get a new contract, but he did have more money guaranteed by the team. According to the NFL Network and ProFootballTalk.com, Lynch’s base salary in 2014 went from $5 million to $6.5 million, though that isn’t new money. Instead, the Seahawks turned a $500,000 roster bonus, $500,000 in incentives and $500,000 that was part of his 2015 pay into base salary for 2014. Lynch was looking to cash in this year as much as possible because he knows there’s a chance the Seahawks might not bring him back for the final year of his deal when he represents a $9 million hit to the team’s salary cap in 2015.
The Seahawks also reportedly forgave the $255,000 (17 percent of his prorated signing bonus) that Lynch potentially had to pay back for having his holdout last more than six days, though the NFL Network reports it is unclear if Lynch will have to the pay the $30,000-per day fines that piled up during his holdout.
The Seahawks were still on the field practicing Thursday when word first started coming out that Lynch might be returning. When Pete Carroll was asked about Lynch’s possible return, he said, “I don’t know that. That’d be good.”
Quarterback Russell Wilson was effusive in his praise of Seattle’s other running backs, but said of Lynch: “Hopefully he’s here. I don’t know. He’s such a good football player though, we’d love to have him here. He’s done a tremendous job for us and had some unbelievable runs for us, so we want him out here on the field.”
Tight end Anthony McCoy was placed on injured reserve with the torn Achilles he suffered Tuesday, his second torn Achilles in just over a year.
“It’s a heartbreaking injury, because he worked so hard to get back, he looked so good,” Carroll said. “He was the hardest working guy in the program to get back to where he could play, and his other Achilles goes… It’s really disheartening for him.”
It sounds like there’s a chance defensive tackle Jesse Williams, who was carted off the field Wednesday, could end up on IR with McCoy because of what Carroll called “a serious knee situation.”
“He’s got a knee issue,” Carroll said. “I don’t have all of the details for you right now, but he’s got a serious situation we’ll have to take care of … It’s a potential surgery, but I don’t know the details yet.”
Williams, a fifth-round pick out of Alabama in 2013, spent his rookie season on injured reserve with a knee injury.
Kevin Norwood was out again with a sore foot, as was fellow rookie receiver Paul Richardson with a shoulder injury Carroll said was not serious.
Middle linebacker Bobby Wagner continues to sit with what Carroll called “a slight hamstring pull,” which he suffered Tuesday. Also out since leaving Tuesday’s practice early was James Carpenter who has, “a calf that just tightened up.” Carroll said it’s only a matter of days until Carpenter returns.
Rookie defensive end Cassius Marsh, who has thus far been a standout of camp, was held out with what Carroll called, “A little bit of a groin thing that we just want to make sure doesn’t go the wrong way.”
Seahawks add a receiver
With McCoy going on injured reserve, the Seahawks filled the open roster spot by signing receiver Ronald Johnson. A sixth-round pick out of USC in 2011, Johnson has spent time with San Francisco and Philadelphia, but has not appeared in a regular season game and has not been on an NFL roster since suffering a serious ankle injury in 2012.