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Wednesday in Hawkville: Kearse steps into very active role

A recap of the day’s activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Oct. 31:

FOCUS ON

Jermaine Kearse

Jermaine Kearse

Jermaine Kearse. Now that the rookie wide receiver from the University of Washington and Lakes High School has been added to the active roster, he’s ready for any and all action that might come his way in the Seahawks’ game against the Vikings at CenturyLink Field on Sunday.

“It’s a dream come true to finally get my chance,” Kearse said today, when he was wearing a new number (11) as he practiced with the Seahawks’ offense rather than against the Seahawks’ defense. “I’m just going to try to do my best in any way I can to help the team succeed.”

And that could range from special teams duty to playing in the four-receiver sets because of the uncertainty over Doug Baldwin (sprained ankle) and Braylon Edwards (swollen knee). Coach Pete Carroll labeled their status as “wait and see.”

Kearse admitted he was wondering if his number would be called because of the injuries to Baldwin and Edwards, as well as the season-ending injury to Ben Obomanu that opened a roster spot for him.

“I mean I’m not going to say I wasn’t thinking about it,” he said. “I just knew that if I got my chance I was going to make the best of my opportunity, and that’s my plan for this weekend.”

For the NFL team he grew up watching in Lakewood, in the stadium his college team is sharing with the Seahawks this season.

“It’s like I can’t get out of Washington,” Kearse joked. “But I’m happy to be here. I’m very fortunate and blessed to be here. Not too many people get to live their whole life in the state and then play for a professional team in their state.”

Kearse has endeared himself to his coaches and teammates because of how hard he has worked, especially while filling the role of the opposition’s best receiver on the scout team each week.

“Jermaine has done a very good job,” Carroll said. “He’s impressed everybody in everything that he’s done. … We’re fortunate to have him available to pop up.”

One of the first to approach Kearse in the locker room was split end Golden Tate. And after he made a nice catch in the end zone during practice, running back Marshawn Lynch jogged over to congratulate him.

“They came and told me that they’re proud of me, that I deserve it, that I’ve worked hard,” Kearse said. “It feels good to have the older guys come up to me and say those type of things. It just shows they care about everybody on this team and they want everybody to succeed.”

Kearse was added to the 53-man roster on Tuesday when Obomanu was placed on injured reserve because he’s expected to have a cast on the wrist he injured in Sunday’s game against the Lions for six to eight weeks.

To fortify the receiving crew, rookie Lavasier Tuinei was today signed to the practice squad, as was rookie Phil Bates on Tuesday. Both players were with the team in training camp.

PLAYER WATCH

Zach Miller

Zach Miller

Zach Miller. The Seahawks’ tight end has caught 267 passes in his 5½-season NFL career, but where did the touchdown catch he made against the Lions in Detroit on Sunday rank on that list?

“I think it’s my best,” said Miller, who signed with the Seahawks last year after playing his first four seasons with the Raiders. “I can’t think of any better ones I’ve made, really. It was a tough one, but I think it’s probably my best catch.”

Miller used every inch of his 6-foot-5 frame and a fully extended arm to get to the pass from Russell Wilson in the end zone, tipping the ball with one hand before controlling it as he fell to the turf.

“I didn’t locate it until the last second, so just laid out and hoped that I could at least get a hand on it,” Miller said. “I got enough of it on there that I was able to tip it back to myself.”

What goes through his mind while all this is taking place?

“It’s just natural, just reacting to the ball,” he said. “That comes from playing football for so many years that you have a feel for it.”

INJURY REPORT

The official report, as issued by the team:

Did not practice

WR Braylon Edwards (knee)

DT Jason Jones (ankle)

Limited in practice

WR Doug Baldwin (ankle)

OG John Moffitt (knee)

CB Byron Maxwell (hamstring)

Full participation

RB Marshawn Lynch (back)

Carroll said Jones might try to do some work later in the week, but that he doesn’t know if he’ll be available for Sunday’s game.

For the Vikings:

Did not practice

TE John Carlson (concussion)

LB Tyrone McKenzie (not injury related)

Limited in practice

WR Percy Harvin (hamstring)

RB Adrian Peterson (ankle)

S Mistral Raymond (ankle)

CB Antoine Winfield (knee)

Full participation

DT Fred Evans (knee)

DT Letroy Guion (ribs)

LB Erin Henderson (elbow)

P Chris Kluwe (left knee)

QB Christian Ponder (knee)

STAT DU JOUR

The Seahawks are 4-4 for the 13th time in franchise history. Here’s a look at how they fared the other 12 times:

Year    Final record (playoffs)

1978        9-7

1980        4-12

1983        9-7 (2-1)

1985        8-8

1988        9-7 (0-1)

1989        7-9

1991        7-9

1993        6-10

1998        8-8

2001        9-7

2007      10-6 (1-1)

2010        7-9 (1-1)

UP NEXT

“Competition Wednesday” gives way to “Turnover Thursday” as the players continue to prepare for Sunday’s game against the Vikings – their first of two in a row at CenturyLink Field.

The Seahawks’ Tackle Hunger drive is Sunday, so fans attending the game are asked to bring nonperishable food or cash donations that will be donated to Northwest Harvest. The American Red Cross also will have volunteers at the game collecting cash donations to help victims of Hurricane Sandy.

YOU DON’T SAY

“I’m counting on this being a big finish.” – Carroll on the Seahawks playing five of their eight games at home in the second half of the season


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