The Seahawks have re-signed receiver and special teams ace Bryan Walters and released Phil Bates. Bates initially made the final roster over Walters on Saturday, leading to the conclusion that Earl Thomas would be the Seahawks' full time punt returner, but with the re-addition of Walters perhaps he and Earl will platoon at the spot (NOTE: apparently Pete Carroll announced that Earl will return punts this morning, though perhaps this changes things).
The rationale for releasing Walters initially before bringing him back a couple days later is a little unclear but may come down to a little gamesmanship on ways to sneak Bates onto the practice squad. Now that teams have gone through and claimed players they like, signed free agents they like, and filled out their roster and practice squads, perhaps they'll be satisfied with where they are and simply let Bates just slip through to Seattle's squad? I don't know if that makes any sense but it might seem that the team felt Bates was more likely to get claimed during cutdowns than Walters... or something. Or maybe the Seahawks just lost their nerve about putting Earl Thomas on as punt returner.
Either way, welcome back, Bryan! Sorry, Phil... hopefully the Hawks get sneak him onto the practice squad now.