The Seahawks have placed rookie receiver Dee Eskridge on the injured reserve as he continues to deal with the after effects of a concussion suffered in the season opener on Sept. 12 at Indianapolis.
Eskridge has missed three games since then and had already been ruled out for Thursday night’s game against the Rams. Going on IR means Eskridge, who was Seattle’s first pick in the 2021 draft at 56th overall, will also have to miss the next two games against the Steelers and Saints before being eligible to return on Oct. 31 against Jacksonville.
Seattle also added a receiver for the Rams game by elevating veteran Phillip Dorsett from the practice squad.
Dorsett gives Seattle five receivers on the 53-man roster for the Rams game.
Putting Eskridge on IR opens up a spot on the 53-man roster. Seattle apparently hoped that spot could be filled by the return of tight end Gerald Everett off of the COVID-19 reserve list, and could use that spot to activate Everett next week. Seattle could eventually add Dorsett to the 53, as well — players can be elevated off the practice squad just twice in a season without having to clear waivers.
Coach Pete Carroll spoke optimistically earlier this week of Eskridge returning to practice with the hope he could return to the field soon.
Seattle held walk-throughs all week and not full practices. But after being listed as limited Monday, Eskridge was listed as DNP on Tuesday and Wednesday.
“It’s not a setback,” Carroll said Wednesday. “He was just trying to get back. He had to do work to see where he was, and the work gave us more information. We are still waiting for him to clear totally in all aspects. We are really careful with this and want to look after him, so we are going to be patient and work our way through it. It’s unfortunate, but he had a real serious concussion and it’s taken extra time compared to some of the normal ones, if there is such a thing as a normal concussion.”
Seahawks general manager John Schneider said on the team’s pregame radio show on 710 ESPN Seattle is being especially cautious with Eskridge due to the nature of the injury.
“Unfortunately he got blasted on the sidelines there and smashed his head on the ground, on the turf there,” Schneider said. “You’ve got to be careful with that stuff. So we are going to be extra careful with him. He’s a very, very talented young man and we want to have him down the stretch so we want to do the right thing.”
Eskridge, drafted out of Western Michigan, caught one pass for 6 yards and had two rushes for 22 yards against the Colts. He was injured at the end of a 9-yard rush.
Dorsett was Seattle’s only practice squad elevation for the game. Dorsett was with the Seahawks all of last season but did not play due to a foot injury. He signed with Jacksonville in March but was released on Sept. 28 after playing in one game.