RENTON -- The Seahawks will be without their top two cornerbacks and their starting center for Sunday's game against the Los Angeles Rams.
Center Ethan Pocic and cornerbacks Shaquill Griffin and Quinton Dunbar have all been officially ruled out by. Pocic sustained a concussion that surfaced coming out of last week's loss in Buffalo. Griffin will miss a third straight game due to a hamstring injury and concussion, and Dunbar is out after his bothersome knee became untenable coming out of last week's game against the Bills.
With Pocic out, Kyle Fuller will get the start at center against Aaron Donald and the Rams.
"Kyle is a good athlete," head coach Pete Carroll said. "He's real strong, athletic, physical kid. He's played quite a bit of football now in the league and so we've seen him for years. He's ready to go and he's been right there at the edge of getting in and playing. It's his first time going. ... Kyle will be ready to go. He's going to do a good job for us."
Fuller missed the first two games of the season while suspended for a violation of the NFL's substance-abuse policy. His return to the roster and the team's confidence in him helped allow the team to trade B.J. Finney to Cincinnati in the trade that brought Carlos Dunlap to Seattle.
"We would not have entertained that thought if we didn't," Carroll said of their confidence in Fuller.
Carroll wasn't optimistic about Dunbar's chances to play when he was initially listed as questionable prior to the end of practice. Carroll's comments indicated that Dunbar could miss more than just this week as well.
"Really, he's quieted down," Carroll said. "We're trying to do rehab work with him right now. I saw him this morning and he's in the mode of getting back. It's going to be a bit before we get him back and get him right. It takes some time to take advantage of the rehab. He's making good progress but not enough progress to play in the game.
"I don't think he's making the trip by the time we get through the day today."
Without Griffin and Dunbar, Tre Flowers will get another start with a somewhat uncertain answer to who else will start against Los Angeles. The options for Seattle would include Linden Stephens, D.J. Reed and Neiko Thorpe.
Stephens was the one the team called upon last week when Dunbar and Flowers both left the game for different stretches. Reed has the flexibility to play there, though he is still getting up to speed with the team after coming off the non-football injury list.
Thorpe has spent the last five weeks on injured reserve due to a sports hernia. He will help the depth problems at cornerback as Griffin and Dunbar won't play against the Rams.
"Neiko is ready to go," Carroll said of their intention to activate him this weekend. "We're really excited about getting him back. Neiko has been a real centerpiece of the special teams and captain of the special teams and we've really missed him. He's a really good contributor in a lot of different ways and we're happy to have his leadership back on the field."
Additionally, Ugo Amadi is returning to the lineup this week after missing the last two games due to a hamstring injury as well.
The outlook is marginally better for running backs Chris Carson and Carlos Hyde.
Hyde was able to return to limited participation in practice on Friday after missing the last two games due to a hamstring injury. Carson did not practice but did run as a part of his rehab work from a mid-foot sprain. He will run again tomorrow and in pre-game workouts on Sunday to see if he's able to return to action.
"Carlos practiced today and got work done for the first time in a bit. Chris was running today and tomorrow and is going to run on game day and see if he's ready to go, we're waiting as long as we can to help him out," Carroll said.
"We think Chris has a chance if we don't overdo it early so that's why we decided not to put him on the field today. He still worked out and ran and all of that. Carlos, this was a chance for him to show and he looked pretty good today. We'll have to wait and see how it goes."
Both players are listed as questionable.
Defensive tackle Bryan Mone is out due to a high-ankle sprain, which could lead to a move to injured reserve. Carroll has already indicated that Damon "Snacks" Harrison will be brought up from the practice squad to play in place of Mone for this week's game against the Rams.
Defensive end Benson Mayowa will miss another game due to a high-ankle sprain despite being listed as questionable.
Wide receivers Penny Hart (knee) and Freddy Swain (foot) are questionable to play. Defensive end Alton Robinson (illness) is also questionable.
Linebacker K.J. Wright is questionable as well with a knee injury but Carroll said Wright is set to play. Left guard Mike Iupati is also going to return to the lineup after missing the last several weeks with a back injury.
Photo Credit: ORCHARD PARK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 08: Quinton Dunbar #22 of the Seattle Seahawks tackles Gabriel Davis #13 of the Buffalo Bills during the first half at Bills Stadium on November 08, 2020 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images)