Seahawks’ Cliff Avril will play; Brandon Browner doubtful
Seattle gets good news, bolstering pass rush before 49ers showdown.
Seattle Times staff reporter
RENTON – The Seahawks’ injury report on Friday had a little good news-bad news feel to it.
Defensive end Cliff Avril (hamstring) will play Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers, but cornerback Brandon Browner (hamstring) is listed as doubtful. Coach Pete Carroll didn’t rule out the possibility of Browner playing, although that’s not expected.
Avril, who has dealt with various injuries since signing a two-year deal with Seattle in March, bolsters a pass rush thinned by injuries and suspensions.
Avril returned to practice last week and was close to playing in the opener at Carolina. When asked if Avril will start against the 49ers, Carroll offered only, “He’ll play.”
“I feel like I’ll be up to speed for sure,” Avril said.
Avril registered 20.5 sacks his last two seasons in Detroit, and Sports Illustrated’s Peter King ranked Avril the top free agent in 2013. But Avril was limited at first by a foot injury and, more recently, by a hamstring injury.
He didn’t practice much this preseason but said that forced him to study film and prepare mentally.
“I think that’s the biggest part of my game this year that’s picked up,” he said.
Browner was expected to start practicing Thursday, but he wasn’t able to. He didn’t play against Carolina. Walter Thurmond and Byron Maxwell will again play opposite Richard Sherman.
Defensive end Chris Clemons is listed as questionable for Sunday’s game, although he isn’t expected to play.
Clemons was limited in practice Wednesday but practiced on Thursday and Friday. He is returning after having ACL surgery in January.
“He’s going to have a real chance the next couple weeks to get back and play for us,” Carroll said.
• Safety Jeron Johnson (hamstring) isn’t expected to play, Carroll said. That leaves Chris Maragos as Seattle’s only backup safety on the roster.
• LB K.J. Wright was fined $7,875 by the league for unnecessary roughness after he pulled a Carolina player from a pile by his legs.
• Carroll said DT Jordan Hill (biceps) is expected to return to practice next week.
Jayson Jenks: 206-464-8277 or firstname.lastname@example.org