RENTON -- As it turns out, new Seahawks wide receiver Josh Gordon had been hoping he'd get the chance to play with quarterback Russell Wilson.
After being released by the New England Patriots a week ago, circumstances aligned so that Gordon and Wilson would get their wish of playing together in Seattle.
"Me and Russ have been talking about it for a little while behind the scenes how nice it would be but here I am," Gordon said after practice on Friday in his first comments as a member of the Seahawks. "I admire his game. I think maybe he respected mine mutually. I love the way he plays. It’s as simple as that. He’s just a great ball player. He can make it happen from pretty much anywhere.”
Gordon couldn't just choose to come to Seattle. Because of the timing of his release by New England, Gordon had to go through the waiver process and could be claimed by any team in the league in reverse-order of their 2019 record. With the Seahawks sitting at 7-2, they held the 28th spot in the waiver order. That meant that 27 other teams could have claimed Gordon and Seattle would have been unable to make it happen.
But none of those 27 teams did make a waiver claim on Gordon and the Seahawks did, which allowed for the former first-team All-Pro and the NFL receiving leader for 2013 to land in Seattle.
“I’m grateful to be here," Gordon said. "A lot of gratitude, definitely thankful to land in a spot like this. It could have been anywhere. I couldn’t control that but nonetheless I’m grateful to have this opportunity to go out there and do what I do.
"It’s been great. Smooth transition to a great environment. Great football team, organization. Just really happy to be here."
Gordon said his relationship with Wilson first began around 2014-15 and they've kept in occasional contact ever since. Most of the conversations have centered around football between the two with Wilson checking in on him from time to time as well.
"I guess we just kind of kept tabs on each other from time to time and then just mutually admiring each other’s game and saying what’s up," Gordon said. "That’s about it. We always talked football and I think we built some type of relationship prior to me getting here so pretty nice to have that.”
Gordon said he's in good shape physically after briefly being place on injured reserve by the Patriots. Knee and ankle injuries led to his placement on IR before New England elected to release him instead. While Gordon was still listed on Seattle's injury report this week with the ankle injury, he was a full participant in practice on Friday.
"He did really well," head coach Pete Carroll said. "He was very impressive in terms of picking stuff up, studying overtime. He fit in really well. He’s a really good athlete. You can really tell that he’s got a lot of potential to be a big-time player. It was fun seeing him on the practice field. Did a nice job.”
Carroll wouldn't commit fully to Gordon playing Monday night against the San Francisco 49ers, but the chances are he will make his Seattle debut in the Bay Area.
"You’ve got to wait and see. There’s a good chance," Carroll said.
Gordon was limited in practice the first two days of the week before being a full participant in practice on Friday. While Gordon has had off-field issues throughout his NFL and college football careers, Seahawks players that had been teammates with him elsewhere spoke highly of his work ethic and said he was a great teammate.
"He’s been great since he’s gotten here," Wilson said. "He’s been studying like crazy. He sits up [front] and takes tons of notes. He’s highlighting like crazy. He’s in his playbook non-stop. He’s prepared. He’ll be prepared and ready to roll. He’s a true pro. He’s been in different systems and stuff like that. I think that helps him. I think he’s really fired up to be here. We’re fired up to have him. We’re looking forward to how he plays on Sunday.”
Added Gordon: "It can be difficult, it can be hard on the fly. You want to be able to just move without thinking as much so getting to that part of the game is, I think, the most important part for me, making everything kind of more second nature. ... I’m pretty well knowledgeable about certain offenses. Talking to coach (Brian) Schottenheimer and talking to Russ, they’ve been instrumental in bringing me along in this process.”
-- Tight end Ed Dickson made it through a second full week of practice as he works back from a knee surgery that landed him on injured reserve for the start of the regular season. Carroll said earlier in the week that Dickson was ready to help them this week. However, Carroll wouldn't fully commit to that move being made on Friday.
“You have to wait and see on that one. I’m not calling that one yet," he said.
The Seahawks would have to add Dickson to the 53-man roster for him to play against the 49ers. They would need to waive a player from the roster to clear a spot for Dickson's addition. They have until 1 p.m. on Monday to make that decision for Dickson to be eligible to play against the 49ers.
-- Safety Lano Hill (elbow) and guard Phil Haynes (ankle) are both listed as questionable to play against the 49ers due to injuries. However, they are the only players on the roster that could physically be unavailable to play. With Quandre Diggs set to make his Seahawks debut and Haynes just returning to the roster after a nine-week stint on the physically unable to perform list, Hill and Haynes would still appear unlikely to play.
Carroll said Diggs is ready to go after missing his first two games in Seattle due to a hamstring strain that he had prior to his acquisition in trade from the Detroit Lions.
"Quandre has made it back to practice, made it through it. He’s put himself in a position to play this week," Carroll said.
Photo Credit: New Seahawks WR Josh Gordon speaks with reporters after practice on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019. (photo by Curtis Crabtree / Sports Radio 950 KJR)