The Seahawks made a switch of cornerbacks on their 53-man roster official Tuesday, re-signing Jamar Taylor while waiving Parry Nickerson.
Nickerson was acquired from the Jets for a conditional seventh-round pick in 2021 during roster-cut weekend. But he was inactive for the first game with coach Pete Carroll having said last week he would need some more time to get more acclimated to Seattle’s defense.
The apparent hope is that Nickerson will clear waivers and that the Seahawks can then re-sign him to the practice squad to fill an opening created when Washington signed cornerback Simeon Thomas off Seattle’s practice squad earlier in the day. Thomas was on Seattle’s practice squad all last season but has never been active for a game for Seattle.
Taylor has been in the NFL since 2013 with 41 starts, including three last season with Arizona. He was contending for a spot on the 53-man roster, primarily as a nickelback, throughout the preseason before being released, in part when the team traded for Nickerson. Seattle also has rookie Ugo Amadi and Akeem King to play the nickel spot.
Amadi got the start there against the Bengals but Seattle did not use its nickel position a lot — just 22 of 77 official defensive snaps, with Amadi getting 21 — preferring instead to leave linebackers Mychal Kendricks and K.J. Wright on the field most of the game (each got 69 snaps).
Amadi hurt his shoulder in Sunday’s game, and Taylor’s re-signing is undoubtedly in part a hedge against Amadi’s health while also giving Seattle a veteran option to turn to at nickel if it wants to feature the position more in coming weeks.
He also could help replace Neiko Thorpe if Thorpe has to miss any time due to a hamstring injury he suffered against the Bengals. Taylor, who played at Boise State and started 29 games for the Browns in 2016 and 2017, can play both inside and outside, so he could fill Thorpe’s spot as a backup outside corner, if needed, and maybe also fill some special-teams snaps.
The Taylor-Nickerson switchout was the only roster move Seattle made Tuesday.
While the Seahawks had a few players suffer injuries in Sunday’s 21-20 win over the Bengals, Seattle did not place any players on Injured Reserve on Tuesday, indicating that, for now, none of the injuries are regarded as overly serious. Players placed on IR once the season begins can return after eight games, though only two players a year can be recalled.
Seattle’s other injured players include DT Poona Ford (calf) and TE Will Dissly (knee). But indications are that neither injury is overly serious.
Carroll last Friday offered this assessment of Nickerson’s place in the nickel corner battle: “He’s trying to figure it out. There’s a lot going on. This is a lot happening in this game plan for us, and it’s hard for him to get it all nailed. But he’s a vet, and he is very comfortable with the position and he looks good doing it. Really, really fast, and he’s working hard at it. So, he’s in there too.”