RENTON, Wash. Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said quarterback Drew Lock felt so ill he “barely got off the practice field” Tuesday shortly before testing positive for COVID-19.
“He was dragging,” Carroll said Wednesday. “We would do post-practice work, but [decided] No, let’s get him out of here. It hit him. He’s had it before. He has done all the work to prepare for it. It’s just that it’s got him again.”
Lock’s latest battle with COVID will sideline him on Thursday night for what would have been his first preseason start, a setback in his battle with Geno Smith to replace Russell Wilson as the Seattle starter.
Until Tuesday, Smith had gotten nearly all of the Seahawks’ first team reps this offseason and had started both their mock game and last weekend’s preseason opener. The Seahawks gave Lock all No. 1 reps on Tuesday in preparation for his Thursday night start against the Chicago Bears, which Carroll says has been their plan all along.
Carroll was asked how much Lock needed the reps he would get against Chicago.
“He did need them,” said Carroll. “This week has been a messed up week for a guy to get a lot of turns and stuff. He worked with those who were prepped for the game yesterday, and that’s really all he has. I would have loved to see that all through time would happen this little mini week But we’ll see what happens next week We’ll figure it out But it was important and that’s where we’re going to do extra work after training with DK [Metcalf] and with Slot, and [Will Dissly]and we just couldn’t do that. So we missed that opportunity.”
Lock looked so bad during Tuesday’s practice that the Seattle coaches asked him what was going on afterward. Then he reported feeling ill and was told to see the team’s trainers.
Smith will start against Chicago before making way for third-stringer Jacob Eason.
“It came out of nowhere,” said Carroll. “Obviously he will miss this game, but he has a chance to be back; he has five days to take care of it. It’s a shame. It was his turn to play and start, but we will find out I’m excited for Geno to go He had an excellent shortened week, had a great… day ahead of us so he’s ready to go It will also give Jacob a chance to play some more,, “Of course, and he will get a good shot in the second half. Really, he deserves it and has trained very well for us, so I’m looking forward to him going out and playing some football.”
Lock and rookie running back Kenneth Walker III were the only Seahawks not to attend Wednesday’s practice. Carroll said Walker has a “procedure” for what the coach called a hernia on Tuesday. He added that the Seattle second round is expected to be back before week 1.
Carroll clarified on Wednesday that it is not a sports hernia, which typically has a longer recovery time than a non-sports hernia.
“That’s not what he has to do with,” Carroll said. “It’s something else and we have a chance to get him back soon.”
Carroll said right tackle Jake Curhan (back cramp) will play against Chicago, but linebacker Jordyn Brooks (hamstring) status for the game is undecided. Carroll expects cornerback Artie Burns (groin) and defensive end LJ Collier (elbow) to return next week.