Seahawks expect Marshawn Lynch to return before season’s end

Nov 25, 2015, 2:33 PM | Updated: 3:13 pm
Marshawn Lynch had surgery Wednesday on the abdominal injury that sidelined him Sunday. (AP)
(AP)

RENTON – The Seahawks expect running back Marshawn Lynch to return from abdominal surgery before the end of the regular season, perhaps even earlier than some initial projections.

Coach Pete Carroll confirmed on Wednesday that Lynch had successful surgery earlier in the day. He said he didn’t know what the exact definition of Lynch’s abdominal injury was but that it was at least related to a sports hernia, which is how other reports have classified it.

“Doctor was very optimistic about a quick recovery, and that could mean within 3 or 4 weeks or something like that. There’s a chance,” Carroll said. “So we’ll see how that all works out. Other than that, everything went very well.”

The short end of that time-frame would put Lynch on track to return at the earliest before Seattle’s Week-15 game against Cleveland at CenturyLink Field. The Seahawks are at home again the following week against St. Louis then close out the regular season against Arizona in Glendale.

Lynch’s surgery was performed in Philadelphia by Dr. William Meyers, who specializes in core-muscle injuries and recently operated on Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano. Carroll said the surgery didn’t reveal any further damage to Lynch’s abdomen than what doctors had initially feared.

“Nothing more serious than that and the doctor projected that he could get back pretty quickly,” Carroll said. “They fixed everything that was wrong and the doctor was very optimistic about his return.”

Carroll said Lynch will remain back East for a few days following his surgery.

Rookie Thomas Rawls will serve as Seattle’s primary ball-carrier in Lynch’s absence, with veteran Fred Jackson remaining in the third-down role in which he’s served all season. Seattle re-signed Bryce Brown on Tuesday for more depth at running back. Carroll noted that fullback Derrick Coleman can also carry the ball if needed.

Carroll gave a somewhat conflicting response when asked if Lynch will resume his role as the starter once he’s healthy enough to return.

“We’ll see how it goes. We think so,” Carroll said. “Why would we not? Let’s see how much we get a chance to work Thomas and see how he returns. We might be able to bring him back on a temporary basis. We’ll just wait and see. Of course he’s the guy we’ll lean on, sure.”

Here are some more injury-related notes from Carroll’s media availability:

• Wide receiver Doug Baldwin and center Patrick Lewis are still both expected to play Sunday despite ankle injuries they sustained last week against San Francisco. Carroll said Baldwin is “a little bit sore” and that the team’s decision to promote B.J. Daniels from the practice squad on Tuesday was related to his injury (and presumably that of Paul Richardson as well) but that it won’t keep Baldwin from playing against Pittsburgh.

• The Seahawks still plan on activating cornerback Jeremy Lane from the Physically Unable to Perform list before Sunday’s game. Lane, who broke his wrist and tore his ACL in the Super Bowl, began practicing on Nov. 9 but has yet to make his season debut. “If he makes it through the week OK, he’s going to be active and playing,” Carroll said about Sunday’s game.

• Carroll reiterated that it will be tough for Richardson (hamstring) and linebacker Bruce Irvin (sprained MCL) to make it back this week from their injuries, saying both players will be a game-time decisions at best.

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