RENTON — (Wire Service Report) — For the second time in three weeks, the Seattle Seahawks are sweating a leg injury to quarterback Russell Wilson. Wilson suffered a sprained MCL in his left knee on Sunday in the third quarter of Seattle’s 37-18 win over the San Francisco 49ers. However, head coach Pete Carroll said on Monday that it appears that Wilson avoided any major damage in his knee.
“He’s remarkably well off for having a play like that,” Carroll said. “He looked very good, very upbeat and positive about feeling like he’s going to be fine. Just all positive.”
Carroll said he expects Wilson to be able to play Sunday against the New York Jets. The plan is for Wilson to practice with the team on Wednesday.
“What he has, a lot of guys play with,” Carroll said. “This is something that our trainers have been through a number of times and they know that this is really possible that he’ll be fine, but he still has to respond to the work on Wednesday and Thursday and we’ll see how he gets through it.”
Wilson, who was already playing through a sprained ankle, was injured while being sacked by 49ers linebacker Eli Harold. Wilson was scrambling from pressure when Harold caught him and pulled him down from behind. Wilson’s left leg was caught awkwardly underneath Harold as he was pulled to the ground.
“I don’t think it’s as severe as it may have looked. Thank God,” Wilson said. “We’ll have to do some tests and check all that stuff out, but I’m walking fine and all that, moving it well. I’ve got good mobility. It’s exciting that we won. That’s the huge thing. You always feel better when you win.”
Harold was flagged for a horse-collar tackle of Wilson on the play. The penalty gave Seattle a new set of downs and Wilson had to be replaced by rookie Trevone Boykin. It was the first snaps of his career Wilson has missed due to injury. The only snaps he’d previously missed had been coming out of games late in blowouts.
Wilson returned to finish the series after missing just one play. However, he would defer to Boykin for the remainder of the game with Seattle holding a 30-3 lead.
“I felt like I was strong enough to move just fine,” Wilson said. “I came out for a play and realized I was good to go so I went back out there.”
Wilson spoke extensively with trainers and put a knee brace on his knee on the sideline. Eventually he removed the brace and had a large ice pack wrapped around the knee in its place. Wilson said he would have stayed in the game and kept playing if the result had been in doubt. He expected to be able to play next week against the Jets as well.
“I’ll be good to go,” he said.
Wilson completed 15 of 23 passes for 243 yards and a touchdown against the 49ers before exiting the game.
–In just his second full game since returning from a torn patellar tendon, tight end Jimmy Graham caught six passes for 100 yards and a touchdown for the Seahawks on Sunday.
Though he played in the regular-season opener against Miami, Graham had his snaps limited. He was ramped up to a full workload in Week 2 against Los Angeles and had a breakout performance against the San Francisco 49ers.
“He’s a special player, one of a kind,” quarterback Russell Wilson said. “Probably one of the best in the business, in my opinion. To see him make the catches and make the big-time plays, you know he’s a force field out there. He brings a certain type of energy to the game.”
It was just the second 100-yard receiving game of Graham’s tenure with the Seahawks. He also caught eight passes for 140 yards in last year’s regular-season meeting with the Carolina Panthers. However, it’s been a chore for Seattle to figure out the best way to incorporate him in their offense. Just when it appeared it was starting to click last year, Graham’s knee gave out and ended his season.
Graham caught an 18-yard touchdown pass from Wilson in the second quarter as Seattle surged to a 21-3 lead. He also made an incredible leaping grab, ripping the ball from 49ers safety Eric Reid’s grasp after an offside penalty on San Francisco gave Wilson a free play. He was making catches in tight spaces and Wilson found him frequently.
“Big plays. Tough catches. I think you saw him today in the red zone and on third downs. He’s phenomenal. He’s a phenomenal athlete and it’s going to be cool to see him develop more so in our offense this year,” tight end Luke Willson said.