Wilson cleared to return to football activities for Seattle

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Seattle Seahawks injured quarterback Russell Wilson mimics a throwing motion before an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, Oct. 31, 2021, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

RENTON, Wash. – One month after undergoing surgery on the middle finger of his throwing hand, Russell Wilson was back on the Seattle Seahawks' practice field Monday, flinging passes.

Barring a setback, Wilson should be back under center for the Seahawks on Sunday when they travel to Green Bay.

“This is a remarkable story of recovery,” Seattle coach Pete Carroll said Monday after the team returned from its bye week. “A guy set an intent that he was going to do this and pull it off. I mean, he's way ahead of schedule. We just came off the practice field and he threw the ball all over the place.”

Wilson was cleared earlier Monday to return to football activities, capping a recovery that seemed unlikely when he underwent surgery on Oct. 8 in Los Angeles.

Wilson's surgeon, Dr. Steve Shin, released a statement through the team, saying he had cleared Wilson for a “full return to play without reservation.” Wilson also posted a video on social media Monday with the title “It’s Time.”

“I have also never encountered a player so committed to his postoperative therapy and with so much conviction to return to the same, if not better, level of performance as he had preinjury,” Shin said. “I am absolutely amazed at his progress.”

Seattle started the season 2-3 with Wilson, who was hurt in the Week 5 loss to the Los Angeles Rams when his hand hit the arm of Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald. Seattle went 1-2 in Wilson's absence with Geno Smith as the starting quarterback.

Carroll said the most optimistic outlook on Wilson's recovery was a chance of returning this week, but there was no guarantee that would happen. Carroll also said the key is how Wilson — and his finger — recover from the work each day in practice.

“He looked great out there today. So that’s an enormous accomplishment,” Carroll said. “That was the kind of the hope that if he could pull off something special that it might happen this week. That's kind of what we were thinking and I know he was ready to go yesterday.”

It's the first time in Wilson's career that he missed any games. Wilson had started 165 consecutive games in the regular season and playoffs combined, and only missed a handful of plays during the stretch.

It seems likely a new streak will start against the Packers.

“The intention is that if he's OK, he plays,” Carroll said.

NOTES: Carroll addressed continued speculation linking the Seahawks with WR Odell Beckham Jr., who was waived by the Cleveland Browns on Monday. Beckham can be claimed by any NFL team that wants him at a $7.25 million price tag for the rest of this season. “We’re aware of what’s going on and we’ve been involved to understand it and competing to know what’s happening. And we’ll let you know as it all happens. You'll have to wait.” ... RB Chris Carson, who's been out with a neck issue since Week 5, is expected to return to practice Wednesday. Carroll had hoped prior to the bye that Carson would be able to practice Monday.


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