Bruce Irvin didn’t just return from his four-game suspension this week, last year’s first-round draft choice returned ready to play. It will happen in Sunday’s game against the Colts, as Irvin was added to the 53-man roster Saturday.
On Friday, coach Pete Carroll said Bruce Irvin didn’t want to want another week to make his 2013 debut for the Seahawks.
On Wednesday, linebacker coach Ken Norton Jr. said Irvin, last year’s first-round draft choice, looked ready to step back in despite missing the first four games of the season.
Saturday, on the eve of Sunday’s game against the Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium, Irvin was indeed added to the 53-man roster. To clear a spot, wide receiver Stephen Williams was released.
When Irvin rejoined the team on Monday, the team received a roster exemption because Irvin had been serving a four-game suspension. He was activated after the team’s Saturday walkthrough here.
“He’s in great shape. He’s ready to go. And he’s really charged up,” Carroll said after Friday’s practice at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. “He’s done a lot of studying over the time that he was out of here and has come back ready to take advantage of this. He doesn’t want to wait another game to get going. We’d like to play him this week.”
How much Irvin plays remains to be seen, but where he’ll play was evident in practice. Irvin worked as one of the ends in the nickel defense, the spot where he produced eight sacks last season to lead all NFL rookies. But he also got snaps at strong-side linebacker, the spot where he worked a lot during the offseason and in training camp.
“We all know what he can add to our team – his presence, his speed, his big-play ability,” Norton said after practice on Wednesday. “We’re really excited to get him back in the fold. Just watching him move around and talk, he’s really excited to be here.”
And Norton, son of late heavyweight champion Ken Norton, didn’t pull any punches when it came to his plans for Irvin.
“We’re going to put him right in there. You’re going to see him right away. There’s no waiting,” Norton said. “He’s just going to jump right in there and play, and we’re really excited to get him going.”
Irvin’s reaction to all this? As he said before practice on Wednesday, “My smile explains everything. It feels great. It was tough watching these guys for four weeks. But I paid my debt to society, now it’s time to get back to work.”
Starting with Sunday’s game against the Colts.