Seahawks’ Jordyn Brooks is back, but when (and where) will he play?

RENTON, Wash. — When the Seattle Seahawks gathered on the practice field for their walk-through Tuesday morning, they had a familiar face in the lineup: linebacker Jordyn Brooks.

Less than seven months removed from having the ACL in his right knee surgically repaired, Brooks passed a physical Tuesday, clearing him to come off the physically unable to perform list.

“It feels good just to be back around the team, getting back in the fold of practices,” Brooks said Tuesday. “In that aspect, it’s been great.”

Seattle had a padded practice Tuesday afternoon, so Brooks was held out of that 90-minute session. Coach Pete Carroll said they’re not going to rush Brooks and he’ll practice “when the time is right.” But Brooks did spend 40 minutes on the field during the walk-through.

“It’s a real boost to get his learning up and the communications and for us to see him back out there and get accustomed to start his return,” Carroll said. “It’s going to be a while still, but that’s a great sign. He’s going to make it back. He’s going to be OK.”

Brooks injured his knee on Jan. 1 against the New York Jets and had it surgically repaired on Jan. 19. To pass a physical this soon speaks to the rehab work he did during the offseason alongside teammate Jamal Adams (knee/quad) in Frisco, Texas.

“I just attacked the rehab from day one,” Brooks said. “I know people were throwing numbers around like what the return timetable would be, but I just went off how I felt.”

Brooks said he began doing drills, cutting and “stopping on a dime” around the time Seattle held organized team activities in the spring. By June, he and Adams, who is still on the PUP list, were in good enough condition to compete for the fastest 40-yard dash time between the two of them.

“Of course, I beat him,” said Brooks, who said his fastest time was 4.59 seconds. “The competition was great for both of us (like), ‘Dang, I see him getting better, it makes me want to do a little bit more to get better.’ It was great working out with him.”

Brooks said Adams’ energy and the way he attacked rehab with a positive mindset gave him a boost during his journey to get back from his own injury.

“Having fun every day during his rehab process, it encouraged me to bring that attitude to rehab every day,” Brooks said. (Carroll said Tuesday that Adams, who tore his quad tendon in September, is “not quite as far along” as Brooks.)

Seattle had to restock its linebacker room this offseason because of Brooks’ injury and Cody Barton’s signing with the Washington Commanders on the first day of free agency. Devin Bush signed a one-year free-agent deal worth up to $3.5 million after one week on the open market. Then Seattle had to create cap space to reunite with Bobby Wagner on a $7 million contract on March 25. Wagner is in his 12th year and Bush in his fifth, giving Seattle a pair of experienced linebackers to hold down the position in the event Brooks missed a chunk of the regular season.

Brooks was asked if he could be ready to play by Week 1.

“The way I’m feeling now, I think I would,” he said. “Where I’d play, I don’t know. We’ll see.”

Asked specifically about whether he’d play mike or will linebacker, Brooks said: “I’m just here to play football. It don’t matter where they put me, as long as they put me on the field. I’m not worried about where I’m playing.”

Carroll said “maybe” when asked if Brooks could play Week 1. As for whether he will play both inside linebacker spots, Carroll said: “Yeah. You’ll have to wait and find out.”

Brooks was the starting weakside linebacker next to Wagner in 2021. Last year, he moved to the middle and took over calling the plays. The plan is for Wagner to call the plays this year, which suggests that when healthy, Brooks will go back to will linebacker at the expense of Bush.


Stepping into huge shoes, Jordyn Brooks’ command of the Seahawks’ defense keeps expanding

In Seattle’s dime package, often deployed in obvious passing situations, there’s only one linebacker on the field. That’s likely to be Wagner as well, seeing as he’d be calling the plays, but perhaps Seattle will look to find a role for Brooks there because of his range in coverage.

The key for Brooks between now and the regular season will be getting in football shape.

“That’s the biggest thing, getting conditioned,” he said. “Getting used to 12-play drives or six-play drives and running around in pads. Getting used to that feeling again is going to be the biggest part.”

In May, Seattle declined Brooks’ fifth-year option, meaning his rookie contract will expire after this season (he has a cap hit of $3.8 million). Brooks said he isn’t thinking about the fact that he’s in a contract year.

“I don’t know nothing about numbers, I just know I’m still with the Seahawks right now, and I’ll take full advantage of that,” he said.

Additional injury notes 

First-round rookie Devon Witherspoon is still out with a hamstring injury.

“Spoon is his own spot right now,” said Carroll, being careful not to lump the rookie in with the injured players who are nearing a return. “He’s running straight ahead and getting there. It’s going to be a bit still.”

Running back Kenneth Walker III (groin) returned to practice Saturday but didn’t participate in Tuesday’s practice. However, he has been present in the morning walk-throughs.

“He did the walk-through today, and he looked great,” Carroll said. “He looked like he was flying. He’s going to make it back, there’s no doubt. He looks like he’s healed. He needs more work to make sure we can guarantee he can stay. But he looked great today running around.”

Running back Kenny McIntosh (knee sprain), Carroll said, is on a “good arc,” and once the seventh-round rookie saw Walker back on the field, he was itching to join him. “He was clamoring for it today,” Carroll said. “I made an appeal to the trainers today, and we’ll see what happens the next couple days. He’s making good progress.”

Rookie center Olu Oluwatimi is dealing with an elbow injury, and Carroll said they’re “watching it” to make sure he doesn’t aggravate it further. “He wants to play (Saturday against the Dallas Cowboys); we’ll see what happens,” Carroll said.

Rookie nose tackle Cameron Young (calf) is running but isn’t quite ready to return, the coach said. “He’ll make it probably in the next week or so,” Carroll said.

Rookie defensive tackle Mike Morris missed Tuesday’s practice with a sore shoulder, an old injury that the training staff doesn’t want to become a recurring problem. “We’re going to slow it down for a couple days and see how it goes,” Carroll said. “I don’t know what will happen for the weekend at this point.”

Outside linebacker Darrell Taylor (shoulder) is “making really good progress.” There’s no timeline on his return, though. Carroll said Taylor’s situation is being treated similarly to Morris’ in that they’re being careful so that the issue doesn’t linger.

Receiver Cade Johnson is “doing much better” after being hospitalized with a concussion during the season opener, riding the exercise bike and “getting back to activity,” Carroll said.

Linebacker Jon Rhattigan (elbow) didn’t practice Tuesday but is expected to be on the field Wednesday. “He says he’s playing this weekend,” Carroll said. “We’ll see.”

Receivers Dareke Young (hip) and Cody Thompson (groin) returned to practice Tuesday.

(Photo: Lindsey Wasson / Associated Press)

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