By Eric D. Williams The News Tribune
RENTON — They wear the same No. 17 jersey and are close in stature, but according to new Seattle Seahawk Braylon Edwards, that’s where the similarities end between him and recently released receiver Mike Williams.
“I don’t quite weigh as much as Mike,” Edwards joked. “Mike’s a little bigger than me.”
But like Williams two years ago, Edwards plans to ascend Seattle’s depth chart at receiver.
The Seahawks announced they signed Edwards to the team’s 90-man roster on Wednesday, along with bringing back Duke University tight end Cooper Helfet. Seattle released receiver Cameron Kenney and kicker Carson Wiggs to make room for the new additions.
Terms were not disclosed, but Edwards signed a one-year deal.
Edwards participated in a tryout in Seattle last Thursday, along with fellow receiver Antonio Bryant and linebacker Brian Banks. But according to Edwards, Seahawks general manager John Schneider stayed true to his word, signing Bryant after he had participated in the team’s minicamp — something that left an impression with Edwards. Edwards, Bryant and tight end Kellen Winslow were teammates in Cleveland.
“They lived up to some things they told him,” Edwards said. “So I thought that was very honorable and respectful of Mr. Schneider. So when they doubled back and called me as well, I already was ready to take the offer.”
Edwards worked out in Miami for the Dolphins last week.
Edwards, 29, played for San Francisco last year and finished with a career-low 15 catches for 181 yards in eight games, including five starts. However, Edwards had trouble staying healthy, and was let go by San Francisco in December after a slow recovery from a torn meniscus in his right knee.
Edwards said he had surgery during the offseason to repair the issue, and he looked healthy and in shape in his first practice for the Seahawks on Tuesday.
Two years ago with the New York Jets, Edwards finished with a productive 53 catches for 904 yards and seven touchdowns in 15 starts.
Originally selected No. 3 overall in the 2005 draft by Cleveland, Edwards played four years with the Browns before being shipped to the Jets in a midseason trade in 2009.
Entering his eighth season, Edwards has totaled 341 receptions for 5,323 yards with 39 touchdowns, including a Pro Bowl invitation in 2007.
At 6-3 and 214 pounds, Edwards enters the conversation for the starting split end job opposite Sidney Rice with a crowded group that includes Golden Tate, Ricardo Lockette, Ben Obomanu and Kris Durham.
“Right now I’m just competing to be on the team and that’s all I really care about,” Edwards said. “I’m going to go out there every day and let my play speak for itself.”
Seattle head coach Pete Carroll said with Sidney Rice limited in practice because of his recovery from two shoulder surgeries, and rookie Jermaine Kearse coming off a foot injury, Edwards adds depth at the position.
Seattle now has 14 receivers on the roster.
“I don’t have any idea what it will work out like, but he’s played a lot of football,” Carroll said. “He’s a tough competitor; he blocks and is aggressive when he gets his chances. He runs aggressively with the ball in his hands and he’s got a big catching range.”
Jackson back with the starters
Seattle quarterback Tarvaris Jackson once again worked with the first unit on Tuesday and overall did a nice job of managing the offense.
“At this early portion of camp I thought it was really important to find out where T-Jack is,” Carroll said. “The last time we were together, he was coming off a terrible injury. And had shown great courage and toughness and all that, but he hadn’t been right. So we needed to get him back out here and see what he looks like.
“What’s exciting is he’s quicker; he’s niftier than he’s been. He’s in great shape. He came in here to win this job, as did the other guys, too. So I’m getting a feeling for where he is, and so that’s important. We’ll weigh that into the discussion as we go forward.”
Carroll said he’ll use the off day today to further evaluate the quarterback competition, but that right now he intends to continue rotating all three quarterbacks with the first unit until the team believes it has enough information to make a decision.
Carroll said the fact that he has seen Jackson play for pretty much an entire season means the team may look to get Matt Flynn and Russell Wilson more reps so they could do a better job of evaluating those two for the starting job.
“Right now we’ll stay with the rotation the way it’s going,” Carroll said. “But we haven’t had the evaluation from today (Tuesday), and that means something.”
UW product Kearse (foot), who was placed on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list to begin training camp, is expected to practice on Thursday. … Carroll confirmed that 2011 first-round choice James Carpenter likely will switch to guard when he’s healthy, and that the team has not made a decision on whether or not he’ll play in 2012. Carpenter, who’s still recovering from ACL knee surgery that took place in December, has been placed on the PUP list to begin training camp. … Cornerback Ron Parker, defensive lineman Jason Jones (knee), tight end Anthony McCoy (hamstring), Linebackers Barrett Ruud (knee), Jameson Konz (shoulder) and Matt McCoy (knee) did not practice Tuesday. Carpenter and cornerback Walter Thurmond remain on the PUP list.