By John Boyle Herald Writer
RENTON — The status of receiver Percy Harvin remained a mystery Monday, and likely will until later in the week.
As expected, Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll had no news to give on Harvin, who suffered a concussion after taking two hard shots in Saturday’s win over New Orleans. The way the league’s concussion protocol works, once a player is diagnosed with the injury, it takes the better part of the following week for him to be cleared or ruled out, so there was little Carroll could offer on Harvin’s chances of playing in Sunday’s NFC championship game against San Francisco.
“Not yet,” Carroll said. “We’ll wait through the week here and see what happens. Wednesday, Thursday will be the important days to figure out what’s going on.”
One thing Harvin has going for him is that the Seahawks played on Saturday, meaning he has an extra day to recover. Even with that extra day, and even with a Super Bowl at stake, however, Carroll said they’ll be as cautious with Harvin as they would any concussed player.
“Certainly, yes it does (help),” Carroll said of the extra day. “We’ll see what happens, but we’re going to treat with respect. We’re going to respect the heck out of this, we’re going to take care of Percy and make sure we do the right thing. We’re not going to stretch the limits on this at all. We’ve got to be very careful here, so we’ll do that every step of the way.”
Harvin was making just his second appearance with his new team last weekend, but had to exit the game after taking two hard shots, the first of which was a helmet-to-helmet hit from safety Rafael Bush that drew a flag.
Harvin returned to action after being evaluated for a concussion, only to leave the game for a second time after a hit from Malcolm Jenkins — which didn’t draw a flag — caused him to bounce his head off the turf after attempting to make a diving catch in the end zone.
Harvin had three catches for 21 yards and one rush for nine yards before leaving the game, and the Seahawks scored on four of their five first-half possessions with him in the game.
“Shoot, he looked good,” Carroll said. “He was making some plays. You saw Russell go to him, he caught three balls, and he could have had five. It’s just unfortunate that he got hammered a couple of times. I thought those were legitimate plays and all of that, but just unfortunate for him in trying to make his comeback and get out there.”
Asked to elaborate on the “legitimate’ comment, Carroll said he didn’t take issue with either hit.
“I think the guy was doing the best he could,” Carroll said of Bush’s hit. “They flagged him, and I thought that was legit, then they didn’t flag the guy on the other one, and I thought that was legit.”
The one piece for good news for Harvin is that his surgically repaired hip, which caused him to miss 15 of 16 games this season, feels good in the days following the game.
“He came out very well,” Carroll said. “We’re way ahead of the game on that one.”
Other than Harvin, the only other injury question mark on Seattle’s roster is linebacker K.J. Wright, who has not played since fracturing his foot in last month’s loss in San Francisco. Wright has not yet returned to practice, but has been running on his surgically-repaired foot and has a shot at playing this week, Carroll said.
“K.J. Wright has a chance, yeah,” Carroll said. “We’re going to take a look at him on Wednesday. He ran well today and over the weekend. He’ll get a rest day tomorrow, then he’ll come back out on Wednesday and we’ll see where he is. He has a chance, we’re excited about that for him.”
Titans hire Whisenhunt
The Tennessee Titans hired San Diego offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt as the team’s next head coach. And that’s relevant news to the Seahawks, because the Titans were reportedly also interested in Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn. Titans general manager Ruston Webster was Seattle’s VP of player personnel from 2006-2009, a time that included Quinn’s first season in Seattle as the defensive line coach, and was said to be interested in Quinn. But the Titans ultimately decided against waiting for Seattle’s season to end before making a coaching decision.
Quinn has already interviewed with Minnesota and Cleveland, neither of which have hired head coaches, so there’s no guarantee he is staying in Seattle. But the Titans job going to Whisenhunt means there’s one less team chasing after Seattle’s assistants. Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell also interviewed for two jobs, Minnesota and Washington, the later of which has already been filled when the Redskins hired Jay Gruden.
Herald Writer John Boyle: firstname.lastname@example.org.