RENTON — The Seahawks’ plan for safety Jamal Adams was pretty clearly stated a couple of weeks ago — hold him out for the Minnesota game heading into the bye with the expectation the extra week of rest on his troublesome groin injury would assure he would return for this Sunday’s game at Arizona.
“He’s going to be ready for it next turn, just not this one,’’ Carroll said two weeks ago.
But Wednesday, when asked about Adams, Carroll said he would not practice and was noncommittal as to when he would. And when practice rolled around, Adams was not visible during the time that media are allowed to attend (basically, the first 20 minutes or so when the team does basic conditioning and some early drills).
“Jamal we’ll hold out,’’ Carroll said before practice. “We’ll need more information there.’’
Asked what more information the team needed on Adams, Carroll said “whether he’s full speed or not’’ while also saying that Adams had not suffered a setback.
That sounds sorta ominous, as could the fact that Adams wasn’t visible during the time when media were allowed to attend. But injured players are often off doing conditioning work so maybe his absence was no big deal.
Adams was one of four players who did not practice Wednesday, the others being cornerback Quinton Dunbar and offensive linemen Damien Lewis (ankle) and Brandon Shell (illness).
The team listed Dunbar as out with a knee/resting vet.
That may be both good and bad. Dunbar was held out for what appears to be precautionary reasons, indicating he’s likely to be able to play Sunday.
But the Seahawks may also be having to manage Dunbar’s balky knee — which has already held him out of two games this year — all season.
“We have to make sure to practice him right so he can play on Sundays,’’ defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr., said after practice Wednesday via Zoom.
Adams and Dunbar were each acquired in trades in the offseason with the hope they could transform Seattle’s secondary — some saying it had the potential to be one of the best in the NFL.
But the hoped-for starting four has been in the starting lineup together for only the first two games, with Dunbar and then Adams suffering injuries. Dunbar returned to start against Minnesota, playing 69 of 87 snaps with Tre Flowers filling in for the other 18 at right cornerback.
Ryan Neal has filled in for Adams since Adams injured his groin early in the fourth quarter against Dallas on Sept. 27.
The team has been thrilled with the emergence of Neal, who has two interceptions, including the game-clincher against Dallas.
But the Seahawks also made about the heaviest investment of draft capital possible to get Adams, dealing each of their first-round picks for the next two years to the Jets over the summer to get him (along with Bradley McDougald and a 2021 third-round pick).
They’ll also after the season likely have to offer him a contract extension that the 25-year-old Adams will undoubtedly hope will make him the highest-paid safety in the league (his contract runs through the 2021 season).
So, the team obviously hopes Adams can make it back sooner rather than later while also wanting to assure he doesn’t rush back and get injured again.
Adams missed two games last year with an ankle injury but otherwise started every game he played for the Jets the last three seasons.
Carroll said two weeks ago that sitting out was wearing on Adams.
“It’s really hard on him, because he’s so competitive and he’s at the far end of the spectrum in the kind of energy that he brings and operates with and his expectations are so high,” Carroll explained. “To have to deal with the frustration of not being able to express all of that is really difficult.’’
Carroll says he’s on board with any fan decision
There has still not be an announcement about whether there will be fans at any of the remaining five Seahawks home games.
The team announced earlier in the year that there would not be fans at the first three but there has been nothing since.
Carroll said Wednesday that the team is just “listening and waiting for all of the information that comes in and we’re just going along with whatever guidance tells us and we want to do the right thing.
“This is a very difficult time right now — this is not like everything’s getting great. This is a very difficult time and I can see if we don’t make any move in that direction to change from where we are, I could totally understand that and support that.
“But they’re not asking me, so I’m not really clued in, but I do know that our guys are listening and part of the conversation they can be part of.’’
Seahawks move rookie Sullivan to defensive end
The Seahawks have a draft pick newly working at defensive end.
But it’s not second-round pick Darrell Taylor, who remains on the non-football injury list with no clear return date in sight.
Instead, the Seahawks are trying seventh-round pick Stephen Sullivan at that spot. Sullivan also remains listed as a tight end but he wore a blue defensive jersey in practice Wednesday and also has had his number changed to 48 from 87.
Norton said the 6-foot-5, 245-pound Sullivan has got “the length and speed and look of great pass rushers,’’ so the Seahawks want to give him a shot there and see what happens.
Seattle has obvious needs for more pass rushers, and it’s unclear if the Seahawks will get anything in that regard this year out of Taylor, who has done no football related on-field work since having a titanium rod placed in his left leg last January to repair a stress fracture.
Carroll said earlier this week Taylor was making good progress and didn’t rule out he could return to help this season but also said there was no set timetable when Taylor might be able to practice.
Running back Carlos Hyde, who sat out the last two games with a shoulder injury, was listed as a limited participant in practice Wednesday but did not wear a red protective jersey as he had the previous two weeks. Hyde has 57 yards on 16 carries this season.