RENTON, Wash. — If the Seattle Seahawks are going to continue their defensive resurgence, they’ll have to do so without their best edge player.
Outside linebacker Uchenna Nwosu needs season-ending surgery for a torn pectoral, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Coach Pete Carroll pointed to the likelihood of that outcome during his Monday afternoon news conference, a day after Nwosu left Seattle’s win over the Arizona Cardinals following a tackle late in the second quarter. He didn’t return.
“He’s got a pec injury that’s going to probably require surgery,” Carroll said. “That’s what we’re hearing right now.”
Nwosu, 26, was arguably the Seahawks’ defensive MVP in 2022 after joining Seattle on a two-year, $19.055 million deal from the Los Angeles Chargers. He recorded career-highs in sacks (9.5) and tackles for loss (12) while starting every game, which earned him a new three-year extension worth $53.01 million right before the start of training camp.
In six games this season, Nwosu had 2.0 sacks and four tackles for loss.
Asked whether the Seahawks will have to make an addition at outside linebacker, Carroll responded: “We’re not thinking like that yet. We’re going to try to absorb it.”
Despite missing the second half of Week 7, Nwosu’s 283 defensive snaps this season are still considerably more than the 221 of their next closest outside linebacker, Boye Mafe. A second-round pick in 2022, Mafe leads the team with 4.0 sacks. That rotation also includes Darrell Taylor (1.5 sacks) and rookie second-round pick Derick Hall.
“We’ve got to count on our rotation,” Carroll said. “We’ve had a rotation going the whole time and we’ll just continue that. It challenges it, though. Chenna is a fantastic football player and a great team member, and such a tough guy and such a heady player and so consistent, always really physical, so he always sends the right message. We really will miss him.”
Another part of Seattle’s plan to account for Nwosu’s absence will likely be more blitzing from safety Jamal Adams, who has only six pass-rush snaps in his two full games since returning from his 2022 knee injury. Carroll indicated that number will increase.
After a slow start, the Seahawks have held each of their last three opponents to fewer than 250 yards, allowing a combined total of 30 points while recording 18 sacks in that span.
“We’re hoping that we’re going to start making some progress here this week and see him get back on the field,” Carroll said, “so we’ll see what happens.”
Two other Seahawks receivers could soon rejoin the mix.
Dee Eskridge‘s six-game suspension officially ended Monday. Carroll said the roster exemption Seattle received for Eskridge allows him to practice for a week without counting against the team’s 53-man roster. He said Eskridge could conceivably play this Sunday against the Cleveland Browns, even though he hasn’t played or practiced since injuring his knee in the Seahawks’ Aug. 10 preseason opener.
Dareke Young, meanwhile, should resume practicing this week or next week, per Carroll. Youngh as been on IR all season while recovering from core muscle surgery.
Carroll said rookie running back Kenny McIntosh, on IR with a knee injury from early in training camp, will hopefully practice Wednesday. He did not sound optimistic about right tackle Abe Lucas (knee) returning to practice this week. Lucas has been on IR since Week 2.