RENTON — That only one team put in a waiver claim for Josh Gordon was viewed by many around the league as illustrating the skepticism that exists that the troubled receiver will ever play like the All-Pro he was in 2013 — or be worth the trouble it might take to get him anywhere close to that point.
But to Gordon, all that mattered is that the one team that claimed him was the Seahawks.
Gordon said he’s long admired the Seahawks from afar, in large part because of a relationship he said he’s had with Russell Wilson since 2014 or 2015.
“Actually, yes for a long time,’’ Gordon said when asked if he’d thought about playing for the Seahawks when he talked to the media following Saturday’s practice, the first time since coming to Seattle. “Me and Russ have been talking about it for a long time, for a while behind the scenes — how nice it would be. Here I am.”
And Monday, Gordon may well be on the field making his Seahawks debut.
While Seahawks coach Pete Carroll tried his best to be evasive, not wanting to tip off the 49ers about anything more than he has to, he finally allowed that “there’s a good chance’’ Gordon will suit up at San Francisco.
Carroll said earlier in the week the team needed to see how well Gordon was picking up the offense and show he was healthy after having dealt with knee and ankle injuries in New England.
But Gordon appears healthy. He was not listed on the team’s status report for Monday’s game, and he said “I feel great.” And Carroll raved about Gordon’s quick grasp of the playbook.
“He was very impressive in terms of picking stuff up, studying overtime,’’ Carroll said. “He fit in really well. He’s a really good athlete. You can really tell that he’s got a lot of potential to be a big-time player. It was fun seeing him on the practice field.’’
Studying overtime isn’t something Gordon was accused of in New England, where rumors leaked after he was waived that he had been late to meetings, that the team had trouble locating him and that his work ethic was a concern.
For a player with Gordon’s history — multiple suspensions for substance-abuse related issues — such talk raised the reddest of flags and likely played into the Seahawks being the only team to put in a waiver claim for him, doing so with the 28th selection out of 32 teams.
Gordon had been a fairly consistent producer in New England with 20 catches for 287 yards in six games this season and 40 for 720 in 11 games for the Patriots in 2018.
Gordon said his waiving (which officially came with the designation of a minor issue because of his knee) caught him by surprise.
“But we all know it’s a business,” he said. “Your time can be short lived anywhere. You never know what could happen day to day in the NFL. But that was the decision they made, and I’m glad to be here now, though.”
The Seahawks haven’t been shy about taking on players perceived as risks, and the hope is that the team’s culture and Wilson’s influence will get the most out of Gordon.
Gordon said he will rely on his family, hobbies and his dog — a French bulldog named Franky — to help in his adjustment.
Gordon described his support system this way: “Got my family. We’re remote, so we travel a lot to see each other. My family always comes to the games, always comes by to hang out. I got my dog, so it’s just me and my dog. We hang out every day. I keep it easy. I keep it smooth. Playing video games, binge watching TV shows. Anime. That’s about it.”
There will also be the presence of Wilson, who is said to have heavily encouraged the Seahawks to take a shot on Gordon.
“I guess we kind of just kept tabs on each other from time to time, and mutually admired each other’s game and saying ‘what’s up?’’’ Gordon said. “That’s about it. We always talked football, and I think we built some type of relationship prior to me getting here. It’s pretty nice to have that.”
It’s also nice to have another chance. Gordon’s immense talent wrapped in a 6-foot-3, 225-pound frame figured to entice teams, especially with Gordon still just 28 years old.
But chances for everyone run out at some point.
Saturday, Gordon gave off every indication that he’s planning to make the most of this one.
“I’m just grateful to be here,’’ he said. “I’m grateful to be here. There’s a lot of gratitude. Definitely thankful to land in a spot like this. Could’ve been anywhere. I couldn’t control that. Nonetheless, I’m grateful to have this opportunity to just go out there and do what I do.”
Seahawks healthy heading to Bay Area
The Seahawks will be about as healthy as they could have hoped for as they head to the Bay Area Sunday afternoon.
They listed only two players as questionable and none as doubtful or out. The two listed as questionable are backups — safety Lano Hill (elbow) and guard Phil Haynes (ankle).
Everybody else is considered good to go, which includes two key players who missed most of practice this week — left tackle Duane Brown (biceps/knee) and defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (knee/toe).
Both were limited in practice Saturday but expected to play.
The list of those considered healthy also includes tight end Luke Willson, who suffered a rib injury against Tampa Bay.
That Willson is healthy could influence the team’s decision on Ed Dickson, who returned to practice two weeks ago from injured reserve. The team has until Monday to activate Dickson but would have to waive another player to make room. The Seahawks can also wait until after this game to make a move with Dickson.
Also among the healthy is safety Quandre Diggs, who the team acquired in a trade with Detroit three weeks ago. He sat out the last two weeks with a hamstring injury but was a full participant in practice the last two days.