EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. As it seemed would happen during workouts Thursday and Friday, veteran running back C.J. Spiller is active for the Seahawks today at the New York Jets. This is three days after his first practice for Seattle.
His role appears to be clear. C.J. Prosise is inactive for the third consecutive game with a cracked bone in his hands, so Spiller, 29, will likely be the third-down back. He was more of a pass catcher than runner last season, his only one with New Orleans after being Buffalo’s lead back from 2011-14 and making the Pro Bowl in 2012.
Spiller had been home in South Carolina working out at Clemson and hanging out with his 10-year-old daughter Shania from when the Saints released him unexpectedly Sept. 13 and Wednesday.
Lead running back Thomas Rawls is also inactive. He’s going to be out multiple weeks with a cracked fibula.
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So it’s Christine Michael, Spiller and rookie Alex Collins as the runners on a day the Seahawks need the ground game to protect Russell Wilson as well or better than Seattle’s iffy offensive line may be able to against New York’s rugged defensive front.
Wilson was warming up pregame with a brace over the sprained medial collateral ligament in his left knee. He hopped up and down to test the knee and brace between throws. He sprained his right ankle, Sept. 11 against Miami.
Rookie defensive tackle Jarran Reed is inactive because of a hip injury he began feeling Wednesday, coach Pete Carroll said. Tony McDaniel will start for Reed, opposite the Jets’ best offensive lineman, veteran center Nick Mangold.
Rookie tight end Nick Vannett was healthy this week for the first time since he got a high-ankle sprain more than a month ago. But the Seahawks decided to stay with the three tight ends they had for the first three games: Jimmy Graham, Luke Willson and Brandon Williams. Williams value on special teams won out there. Willson is likely to block some again at fullback, like he did for the first time during last week’s win over San Francisco. Seattle does not have a true fullback on the roster.
The rest of the Seahawks’ inactive: rookie backup safety Tyvis Powell, rookie backup guard Rees Odhiambo and rookie backup tackle George Fant.
The Jets left tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins from Fox Island, Gig Harbor High School and the University of Washington inactive. He signed this week after Tampa Bay released him following an arrest for driving under the influence.
The Jets have as active for the first time running back Troymaine Pope. Remember him?
Pope was a star of the Seahawks’ preseason as an undrafted rookie. Seattle may have tried to sneak him through waivers onto the practice squad, but the Jets claimed him last month just before the regular season began.