By Brady Henderson
Potentially down to three cornerbacks with the reported suspensions of Walter Thurmond and Brandon Browner looming, the Seahawks will have to make some moves to address the position before their Monday night showdown with New Orleans.
Here are five players who are believed to be options:
Antoine Winfield. Coach Pete Carroll told 710 ESPN Seattle’s “Brock and Danny” Monday that it’s “a possibility” Seattle signs Winfield, who joined the Seahawks in the offseason but was released at the end of training camp when he was beat out by Thurmond to be the team’s nickel cornerback.
Released at the end of training camp, cornerback Antoine Winfield (21) is an option for Seattle with Brandon Browner and Walter Thurmond each facing suspensions. (AP)
“He’s a really good football player,” Carroll said of Winfield, a three-time Pro Bowl selection. “With the news that we may have here going in to this game, that’s a possibility. We’ll figure that out when the time comes. But he’s a great kid. Really quality kid to bring in to your team at a time like this. He knows his way around. Everybody knows him and respects the heck out of him.”
Winfield, 36, decided to retire when Seattle released him, and while he may not have formally done so, that raises an obvious question about his readiness to immediately contribute (one Bob Stelton and Dave Grosby discuss in the video at the top of this post). For what it’s worth, Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network indicated via Twitter Monday that Winfield is in football shape.
Marcus Trufant. The longtime Seahawk reportedly worked out for the team Monday. He spent 10 seasons with the Seahawks, beginning his stellar career in Seattle in 2003 when he was drafted in the first round out of Washington State and ending it last season as he served as the team’s nickel cornerback. While he struggled at times in that role, Trufant also had his moments. And his familiarity with the organization in general and Seattle’s defense in particular is an obvious bonus.
The same question about Winfield would apply to Trufant, who is 32 years old, has a history of back problems and hasn’t played since he was released by Jacksonville at the end of training camp.
Perrish Cox. The former 49er and Bronco is expected to work out for the Seahawks on Tuesday, according to Mike Silver of the NFL Network. Cox, who is listed as 6 feet tall and 190 pounds, made nine starts for the Broncos as a rookie in 2010 and was a backup during his two seasons with the 49ers, who released him earlier this month. Update: Seattle announced the signing of Cox Tuesday afternoon.
Tharold Simon. Listed at 6-foot-2 and 202 pounds, Simon has the size and physicality that are distinguishing traits of Seattle’s cornerbacks. The Seahawks just haven’t been able to see him in action as the rookie fifth-round pick has been on the Physically Unable to Perform List because of a foot injury. Carroll said he is expected to begin practicing week.
“That’s really important to us to see what he looks like and see how he does. We really don’t have any information on him as one of our guys. He’s just a big, tall, good-looking guy,” Carroll said. “He looks like one of our guys, but he hasn’t practiced yet.”
DeShawn Shead. An undrafted rookie out of Portland State in 2012, Shead is a former decathlete who has the versatility to play both cornernback and safety. Carroll said Monday that he’s done enough to earn consideration for a promotion from Seattle’s practice squad to the active roster.
“DeShawn Shead has done a great job with us. He’s very close to being a part of this club, and on the regular roster and all that,” Carroll said. “He’s been practicing beautifully throughout the season so far, and we really trust him.”
Follow Brady Henderson on Twitter @BradyHenderson.