For most of the offseason following the 2018 season, the question surrounding the availability of Mychal Kendricks for the 2019 season had to do with his pending sentencing in federal court for his guilty plea in relation to securities fraud. With that sentencing having been delayed from its originally scheduled date in December 2018 to January 2019, then to April, then to July, then to September and now to February, both Kendricks and NFL teams are still waiting to learn his fate in that legal matter.
However, with his 2019 season now over due to a torn ACL, Kendricks’ availability for the 2020 season will now depend on both the outcome of his sentencing and his rehab from the late season knee injury. Wednesday the Seattle Seahawks finally moved Kendricks to injured reserve and filled the empty roster spot with a promotion from the practice squad.
OT Chad Wheeler has been promoted from the #Seahawks practice squad as Mychal Kendricks (knee) goes to IR.— Joe Fann (@Joe_Fann) January 8, 2020
The promotion of offensive tackle Chad Wheeler from the practice squad is interesting for several reasons. For starters, the move gives the Seahawks eleven offensive linemen on the 53 man roster, which is the first time I can remember the team having that many offensive linemen at one time. The reason that could be a key heading into the Divisional Round game against the Green Bay Packers on Sunday is that the promotion of a tackle to the roster would seem to indicate the Hawks could be without Duane Brown at left tackle once again this weekend.
Further, with Jamarco Jones having served as the fourth string tackle behind Brown, George Fant and Germain Ifedi for most of the 2019 season, it could indicate that Jones will once again be needed on the interior of the line. In the 17-9 win over the Philadelphia Eagles in the Wild Card game Jones played in place of the injured Mike Iupati, and with both Brown and Iupati among the oldest starting offensive linemen in the NFL this season, it’s not hard to imagine their injuries taking a bit longer to heal than if they were younger.
In any case, the recovery of Brown and Iupati and their potential ability to man the left side of the line will certainly bear watching as the injury reports are released over the course of the coming days.