Carroll pushes back on decision on Seahawks QB

RENTON, Wash. — The Seattle Seahawks quarterback battle between Geno Smith and Drew Lock might not be decided any time soon.

Coach Pete Carroll said Tuesday the Seahawks will take “all the time we need” to settle on a starter, noting the two and a half weeks they have between Friday’s preseason finale against the Dallas Cowboys and the September 12 home opener against Russell Wilson and the Denver Broncos.

Carroll said Smith remained in the lead but was “wide open” to the possibility that Lock could pass him.

Carroll did not say when he originally planned to make a decision, but said that changed when Lock was sidelined with COVID-19 last Tuesday, two days before he was due. to make his first start of the summer in Seattle’s second preseason game against the Chicago Bears. Lock returned on Sunday and took part in all three practices this week, sharing first-team reps with Smith on Tuesday.

Carroll did not reveal who would start on Friday, but reiterated that Lock would play “a lot”.

“I’m open to whatever comes up,” Carroll said. “Geno has been the guy in the front position the whole time, and I’ve shielded that thought throughout. He’s done a really good job. He’s been very consistent. So we’ll see what happens. There’s still two weeks of practice, too, after that. I had a clear idea of ​​what we were going to do with the timeline, but that got messed up, so we’ll use all the time we need.

Smith took most of the first-team reps. He started the Seahawks’ sham game and then their preseason opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers a week later. The plan was for Lock to start against Chicago and go from there. Lock took on all first-team reps last Tuesday but struggled while feeling ill, testing positive later in the day.

“Today is a really big day for me to find out what they look like today,” Carroll said before practice. “A guy is coming back from COVID. He came back two days ago, did well, did all the step-by-step stuff yesterday, went well. Let’s see how he is today and see where that is. fits in. But I’m not closing the book on anyone competing for their spots. We’ve got two huge weeks ahead: the end of this one, [then] next week is a huge week for us and we come back with another full week and an extra day. So we have plenty of time here to sort it out. »

Lock, acquired from Denver in the Wilson trade, topped Smith in the Aug. 6 mock game at Lumen Field and had a good night against Pittsburgh with a pair of touchdown passes until he slipped up late. He lost a fumble when he failed to account for an unblocked rusher from the edge.

“He played really well,” Carroll said. “His pace was good. I also come back to the Lumen game, because that was the other one we used for the evaluation. He was very fast with the football. I would like to continue to see that happen. When he In at the end of the day we missed something at the end and we gave up the ball. I just would like to see him finish the game and finish the plays that he is able to make. He showed a lot of very good things. I thinks he had two of the three drives he scored coming out against [Pittsburgh]. But we’re in a different setup now because of last week’s game.”

The Seahawks went scoreless in seven first-half practices behind Smith last week against Chicago. He was 10 of 18 for 112 yards, but at least three of his misses were falls.

When asked if the Seahawks could play two quarterbacks in the regular season, Carroll said that was a possibility but not the plan.

“I could go ahead and just call him, but I want to let the guys fight and let them show where they are and let us get as much information as possible,” he said. “Geno has done a really good job in that position. His voice is solid. He’s on point all the time. He’s been very consistent with his work all of it, and Drew has been very sharp. I know it’s not isn’t supposed to be a good situation when you have two quarterbacks. It means you don’t have one, the old saying goes. I don’t know. We could have two. We’ll see what happens.

Carroll initially said he expected rookie running back Kenneth Walker III to be back by Game 1 of his hernia procedure, but he has since backed off on that idea. Seattle’s second-round pick is up for a big role alongside Rashaad Penny.

“I don’t know what to call what’s going to happen because it’s such an unusual circumstance that he has,” Carroll said. “He’s really tough, he’s making big progress every day. He just feels more comfortable. I think he sneezed the other day and he got through it. So he’s fine. But how many weeks will it take I don’t know The docs don’t tell us either, so I think a lot will have to do with it.

“If you count on him, he’ll come back quickly. He’s really tough. He’s very demanding of himself. So we’ll see how it goes, but we’ll hope that happens.”

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