Already missing star defensive tackle Jarran Reed, the Seahawks defensive line depth just took another hit.
According to Ian Rapoport, second-year defensive tackle Poona Ford suffered a calf strain during Sunday’s Week 1 victory over Cincinnati and is considered “week-to-week.”
Undrafted out of Texas, Ford burst onto the scene for Seattle last December, recording 13 tackles and three tackles for loss during the team’s final five games. Coming off the strong finish to his rookie season, he continued his emergence as one of the stars of training camp, drawing raving reviews from coaches and teammates.
Back in early August, center Justin Britt said in regard to Ford. “He has a chance to be one of the best nose tackles to have ever played.”
Making his second career start against the Bengals, Ford recorded two tackles and a tackle for loss against the Bengals, helping limit the opponent to 34 rushing yards on the afternoon. But he was forced to exit in the second half and after the game, coach Pete Carroll wasn’t sure whether he was battling cramps or dealing with a more significant issue.
With Reed serving a suspension for five more games, losing Ford for an extended period of time would be a major blow to the Seahawks defense, especially with upcoming games against the Steelers, Saints, and Rams.
If Ford can’t return to action quickly, Seattle may have to install undrafted rookie Bryan Mone into the starting lineup alongside veteran Al Woods. Behind them, the Seahawks could reduce Quinton Jefferson and Branden Jackson inside to play some snaps, but it wouldn’t be surprising if a roster move is coming to shore up depth.
Though Seattle would have to release a player to open up a roster spot, re-signing Jamie Meder might be the best option. He played well throughout the preseason and would provide a quality short-term insurance option while Ford recovers from his injury.
Earl Mitchell, another veteran who spent training camp and the preseason with Seattle, could be an alternative to return as well.