Friday, March 24, 2023
March 24, 2023

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Seahawks’ Carson to undergo season-ending neck surgery

Running back hasn’t played since Week 4


RENTON — The Seattle Seahawks will be without starting running back Chris Carson for the rest of the season after he chose to undergo surgery on his neck.

Coach Pete Carroll didn’t fully describe the issue Friday but indicated Carson has a nerve in his neck being impacted by a vertebrate and that surgery is the best option for recovery.

“We went as long as we could and he worked as hard as he could at it and after just not being able to get it to happen and turn around, this is the best choice we got,” Carroll said.

Carroll said the issue is causing Carson discomfort and surgery became the obvious choice after he returned to practice last week. The expectation is that Carson will be able to play again in 2022, Carroll said.

Carson has been on injured reserve for several weeks. He hasn’t played since Week 4 against San Francisco and will finish the season with 54 carries for 232 yards and three touchdowns.

Carroll said there were discussions about surgery when the issue first popped up in early October but the hope was the problem would taper to the point where Carson could play again this season. After a couple of days of practice last week, it was clear more drastic action was necessary.

“When he came back to practice the first day it wasn’t quite right. He practiced again the next day and it just didn’t relent,” Carroll said. “It’s been really uncomfortable for him. It’s been physically uncomfortable for him so the indications were real strong that we needed to do something.”

The Seahawks will lean on Alex Collins and Rashaad Penny as the primary running backs the rest of the season with Travis Homer and Deejay Dallas mixed in.

Carson is in his fifth season with the Seahawks and injuries have been a constant issue. He missed most of his rookie season due to a leg fracture. In 2019, Carson suffered a hip fracture late in the season that cost him a chance to contribute during Seattle’s playoff run and brought Marshawn Lynch out of retirement. Last season, a sprained foot kept Carson out of four games.

But when healthy, the 27-year-old Carson is the closest the Seahawks have come to matching the running style and attitude that Lynch provided during Seattle’s run to consecutive NFC titles.

Carson’s best season came in 2019 when he played 15 games and rushed for 1,230 yards and seven touchdowns. Carson signed a two-year contract with Seattle last offseason.

“Had he made it through the season (surgery) would have been considered anyway,” Carroll said. “So he’ll have more time and give it another couple months on it here, and and get a jump on (recovery).”

NOTES: Seattle listed S Jamal Adams (groin), CB D.J. Reed (groin/knee) and DE Kerry Hyder Jr. (calf) as questionable for Sunday against Arizona. Carroll said Adams and Reed would have to go through pregame warmups before a decision is made on their status. Both players sat out practice Friday. Hyder was a limited participant Friday and should be able to play. … TE Gerald Everett (groin) and T Duane Brown (hip) were both off the injury report, indicating both should play.