Seahawks expect Lockett for finale despite another injury

Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett (16) runs after the catch as New York Jets cornerback Michael Carter II (30) defends during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 1, 2023, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

RENTON, Wash. (AP) — For the second straight week, Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Tyler Lockett expects to play despite his injury status being in question.

Lockett was listed as questionable on Seattle’s final injury report of the regular season on Friday. He said he plans on playing despite a shin injury that led to another set of X-rays for the standout wide receiver.

Lockett returned last Sunday against the New York Jets, less than two weeks after undergoing surgery to stabilize a broken bone in his left hand. The hand held up fine and wasn’t an issue against the Jets, Lockett said.

But at some point in the first half of Seattle’s 23-6 win, Lockett was hit on the plate that stabilizes his surgically repaired right leg. It left a contusion on his leg and sent Lockett to the locker room for another set of X-rays during the game to put his mind at ease that there was no damage to the area where he suffered a bad fracture late in the 2016 season that required surgery.

“Anytime you get hit on a plate it hurts, but when you get a contusion on the plate it’s even worse,” Lockett said. “I should be good to go. I’m not worried about it.”

That Lockett played last week was an exceedingly quick recovery after injuring his hand in Week 15 against San Francisco. Lockett had surgery on Dec. 19 in Southern California to stabilize the hand with 10 screws and a plate being inserted. He was a spectator for Seattle’s Week 16 loss at Kansas City, but was able to return against the Jets.

Lockett had two catches for 15 yards against the Jets, but the hit on his leg made it a frustrating day with nearly as much time spent in the locker room getting treatment as on the field.

“Luckily we was winning pretty good to where I didn’t have to overly do it,” Lockett said. “And then when we knew we kind of had the game won, coach (Pete) Carroll just kind of held me out so I didn’t do anything stupid.”

Lockett needs 21 yards receiving in Sunday’s finale against the Los Angeles Rams to top 1,000 yards for the fourth straight season. While that would be a significant individual accomplishment, Lockett was more concerned about Seattle’s playoff hopes. The Seahawks need a win over the Rams, coupled with either a Detroit win or tie in its game with Green Bay on Sunday night.

Lockett said if the Seahawks win, he might distract himself watching something other than the Sunday night game.

“It’s hard to stress about it. It’s like if we belong, we’ll get there, if we don’t, we’ll wait until the next season,” Lockett said. “It’s hard to just sit and watch a game and stress about it because in the NFL you can be down 21 and come back and win. ... But first, we got to take care of business because Sunday night won’t matter if we lose.”

NOTES: Carroll said he expects G Damien Lewis (ankle) and DE Quinton Jefferson (illness) to play despite being listed as questionable. Safety Ryan Neal (knee) and G Phil Haynes (ankle) both sounded less likely to be available.

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