At Booker T. Washington High School in Oklahoma, Tyler Lockett played varsity basketball with a broken wrist, a jammed shoulder and a toe he could barely walk on.
In college at Kansas State, the slightly built wide receiver finished Big 12 Conference games with a lacerated kidney and a balky hamstring that twice popped.
At his 2015 NFL rookie combine, before the Seahawks drafted him in the third round, a medical screening detected a possible heart abnormality that briefly had him fearing his pro career might end before it started. A doctor eventually confirmed that he was OK.
So, of course, last weekend in Los Angeles, Lockett talked his way back into the Seahawks lineup with a sprained knee.
The tough-as-nails Lockett left in the second quarter of the team’s 9-3 loss to the Rams. He jumped and landed awkwardly while going for a Russell Wilson pass on a play that drew an interference penalty.
“I had strength, but it would hurt when I cut,” Lockett said.
Deemed questionable by the Seahawks to return, Lockett did. He caught a 53-yard pass in the final two minutes that got Seattle into Rams territory. The drive, and essentially Seattle’s game, ended on a Christine Michael fumble after a third-down catch at the Rams 27-yard line.
“I have been playing through pain my whole life,” Lockett said.
And the second-year professional keeps answering the bell.
After he hurt his knee, the 5-foot-9, 182-pound Lockett came to the sideline. He got an X-ray. It showed no structural damage.
“I just did a lot of treatment on my own,” Lockett said. “I make up stuff in order to get myself to feel right again.”
He kept sprinting up and down on the sideline to show the Seahawks medical staff he was ready to return to action.
“I made them believe,” Lockett said.
Even though Lockett was limited in practice Wednesday, coach Pete Carroll said his speedy receiver was on track to play Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers.
“As long as I am not in a coffin,” Lockett said, “I am going to be out there playing.”
WILSON, BALDWIN, GRAHAM ON TRACK TO PLAY
Signs are that banged-up Russell Wilson, Doug Baldwin and more-fully-go Jimmy Graham will all play against San Francisco.
Thomas Rawls? The lead running back’s availability remains in some doubt.
Wilson was again doing everything Wednesday, including running through the daily “bag drill” to begin practice, during the first 30 minutes that the media was allowed to watch.
The fifth-year quarterback hasn’t missed a practice since he sprained his ankle Sept. 11 and finished the opening win over Miami — and he still hasn’t missed a practice, let alone a game, in his NFL career.
“He looked better than last week, starting the week,” Carroll said of Wilson and his ankle. “He’s ahead.”
Carroll said Baldwin “twisted” his knee in Los Angeles. Baldwin finished the game — in which he got back spasms.
“He’s looking fine,” Carroll said. “He thinks he’s going to be fine, and he’ll practice throughout the week.”
Rawls got kicked in the shin area of his leg during the first half of the Rams game and did not return. That was after he had seven carries for minus-7 yards in his second game since returning from a broken ankle in December.
“He’s got a little strain on the side of his leg. It’s a rare kind of muscle that gets affected and stuff, up his shin, kind of,” Carroll said.
Rawls’ latest injury makes it more likely that Michael will get more rushes against the 49ers than the 10 carries he had at Los Angeles, while playing 48 of the offense’s 67 snaps. He gained 60 yards on those 10 carries with Rawls out for the last 2½ quarters.
Graham appeared to get rest in practice. He continues his comeback after rupturing a patellar tendon in his knee last Nov. 29. Graham played for 55 snaps against the Rams, up from 17 the week before against Miami.
“Jimmy is going to be a big factor for us,” Carroll said. “He played 50 plays last week, and that means he’s playing a regular amount of football. Now that he’s back in there, we can’t keep him out of the forefront. He’s just that good of a player. The week before he played 12 (snaps). So this was a big jump for him.
“And I think, as well as the coaches think, it’s back to normal now.”
TUKUAFU CUT, AGAIN
One week after they re-signed him, the Seahawks cut veteran Will Tukuafu again.
Tukuafu was in for seven plays against the Rams.
The team didn’t make a corresponding move to add a player, so Wednesday ended with 52 players on the 53-man roster.
KASEN WILLIAMS IS BACK, SORT OF
Former Skyline High School and University of Washington wide receiver Kasen Williams is back on the Seahawks practice squad — again.
He returned to team Tuesday after Seattle released defensive back Tye Smith, a 2015 draft choice, from the practice squad.
“I’ve been here before, so I am going to keep climbing and keep doing what I do,” Williams said.
As an undrafted free agent in 2015, Williams spent much of last season on the Seahawks practice squad. He got promoted for the final two games of the regular season and played in both playoff games.
Williams was a favorite to keep his roster spot in 2016, but he injured his hamstring during training camp and was part of final round of cuts.
He was signed to the practice squad, but got released shortly thereafter.
He said last week that he laid low on the couch at home. He continued to work out at Empower Health and Diesel Fitness in Renton with longtime trainer Kevin Childs.
“You just sit there and wait, and don’t do anything else,” Williams said. “Every time I got an unknown-number phone call, that put me on alert.”
He did get one offer of employment from a familiar phone number: that of his father, Aaron, who starred at Tacoma’s Wilson High School.
“He wanted me to come over and do yard work,” Williams said.
The Seahawks signed ex-LSU running back Terrence McGee to the practice squad.