The Seahawks expect FS Earl Thomas (broken tibia) to be ready for Week 1 of the 2017 season.
Thomas' difference-making presence was felt severely down the stretch as Seattle allowed point totals above 30 in three of their final six games and became increasingly vulnerable to big plays, both in the run and pass games. Thomas turns 28 in May. The Seahawks have him signed for $8.5 million in 2017.
Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Tyler Lockett (fibula/tibia) should be ready for Week 1 of the 2017 season.
Lockett's broken fibula and tibia ended his season and may have played role in Seattle's inability to hang offensively with Atlanta in Saturday's Divisional Round loss. For the second straight year, Lockett's offensive role began slowly before taking off down the stretch, prior to his injury. Lockett remains an intriguing Dynasty stash, although Paul Richardson made a big case for extended 2017 snaps. The Seahawks should consider moving on from Jermaine Kearse.
Speaking at Monday's season-ending presser, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said C.J. Prosise will have to prove he can stay healthy as a sophomore.
"He has to show it," Carroll said. The Seahawks' thin backfield badly needed Prosise's pass-catching ability as a rookie, but he was injured all season. He had a hamstring issue in camp, hand injury early in the year and shoulder ailment late. Prosise played 147 snaps across six appearances. The Notre Dame product turns 23 in May.
NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reports there's a "good chance" Chip Kelly is named the Jaguars' offensive coordinator.
Per Rapsheet, Kelly went into his interview expecting an offer, and has some "assistant hires ready." Kelly has been adamant he wants to remain in the NFL rather than turn tail and head back to college. Serving as a coordinator would be the best way to rehabilitate his brand at this point. He could be an awkward fit with fellow offensive mind Doug Marrone, who fancies himself a Bill Parcells-type. Kelly would have many more pieces to work with than he did in San Francisco.
The Washington Post reports the Redskins will interview 49ers LBs coach Jason Tarver for their defensive coordinator vacancy.
Tarver oversaw an hysterically-bad 49ers linebacker corps this season, but it could hardly be considered his fault. The Niners had zero talent. Tarver coordinated the Raiders' defense from 2012-14. The Redskins are interviewing underwhelming candidates as they look to replace Joe Barry.
The Houston Chronicle reports J.J. Watt (back surgery) is "ahead of schedule."
Per reporter Aaron Wilson, there's "hope" Watt will do "some" work during OTAs. Noticeably thinner on the sideline during the playoffs, Watt had to shed weight to lessen the load on his surgically-repaired back. He's now in the early stages of bulking back up. Returning from back surgery — this is Watt's second — is rarely straightforward, but he's expected to be ready well ahead of Week 1.
Speaking at Monday's season-ending presser, Chiefs coach Andy Reid committed to Alex Smith as his 2017 quarterback.
"Do I still think we can win with Alex?," Reid asked rhetorically. "Yeah, we were right there." It's not exactly the most ringing endorsement, but due $13.3 million between salary and bonuses, Smith will almost certainly be back under center for a fifth season in Kansas City. Smith has made no progress as a Chief, stubbornly minding the store while trying to avoid mistakes at all costs. With Smith going on 33, the Chiefs at the very least need a plan-of-succession in mind.
Speaking Monday, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll revealed Richard Sherman played through a "significant" MCL injury in the second half of the season.
Carroll said the injury "weighed on" Sherman mentally. Carroll might have been trying to explain away a season that was solid, but not quite up to Sherman's recent standards. Sherman's knee never showed up on the injury report, so the boundary-pushing Seahawks could be hearing from the league. Two months shy of his 29th birthday, Sherman has played through a number of injuries in recent years, but never missed a game. He should have at least one more elite season left in the tank.