The Seattle Seahawks will go back to Patrick Lewis at center for Sunday's game against the Arizona Cardinals ahead of Drew Nowak, who began the season as the starter.
RENTON — Now that he again has his health, Patrick Lewis also has a hold on the Seahawks’ starting center position.
Lewis has started just one game this season, a 27-23 loss to the Carolina Panthers. He was named the starter that week over Drew Nowak.
Lewis suffered an ankle injury in that game, which held him out the past two weeks as Nowak moved back into the starting lineup.
But offensive-line coach Tom Cable said Wednesday that the Seahawks will go back to Lewis now that he is healthy for Sunday night’s NFC West showdown against the Arizona Cardinals at CenturyLink Field.
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“When we made the move and put Patrick in there, then he got hurt, and so we don’t take jobs away around here by injury,’’ Cable said. “So it’s still his ball, and he’ll have the opportunity to go prove that Sunday.’’
Lewis, in his second season with the Seahawks, started four games last year, including both matchups against the Cardinals.
The second of those was a 35-6 victory in which the Seahawks gained a franchise-record 596 yards.
“I think he’s fired up,’’ Cable said. “I’m fired up for him.’’
Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell said Lewis has done a particularly good job in communicating line calls prior to the snap, which figures to be of particular importance Sunday against an Arizona team that blitzes as much as any in the NFL.
“He’s done a really nice job of getting us communicated, which going back a year ago I think that’s probably one of the biggest improvements that we’ve made is getting the communication with the five guys each settled in there,’’ Bevell said. “He does a great job with the snaps, which is sometimes taken for granted, and gets us targeted.’’
Nowak started the first five games before the Seahawks decided to go with Lewis, the only time they have made a change on the offensive line this season for reasons other than injury.
Nowak said before the Dallas game that having been benched “was definitely tough’’ but noted that he and Lewis handle it well, having known each other since both were with Jacksonville in 2013.
“I know it’s constant competition,’’ Nowak said. “They wanted to see what he brought to the table, and I love Pat to death. Was with him in Jacksonville, too, so we’ve been together for a while, so my hat is off to him and it’s just going to be a competition continually.’’
Lockette’s football future still unclear
Coach Pete Carroll said it’s still too early to know the football future of receiver Ricardo Lockette, who had surgery to repair ligament damage in his neck after being injured Nov. 1 at Dallas.
“We haven’t even heard anything about that yet,’’ Carroll said.
Carroll Lockette visited the team facility Tuesday.
“He looks good, and his spirits are great and all,’’ Carroll said. “He’s hampered, he’s got a brace that he’s wearing. Really forward-thinking and positive about coming back.”
Carroll said he doesn’t know if Lockette can do all of his rehab in Seattle but said he will be a constant presence around the team.
“Yeah, we plan on it,’’ Carroll said. “He wants to be here, and we would love to have him here. He lives here in town, so we expect him to be around a lot.”
- The Seahawks have few significant injury questions. Running back Marshawn Lynch sat out Wednesday as his usual rest day. Lockette (who is still on the 53-man roster but is expected to soon be placed on IR) was listed as out. Tight end Luke Willson (toe) was a limited participant. Otherwise, everybody else was a full participant.