RENTON, Wash. — Doug Baldwin was reflecting about what’s become probably the most trying season of his NFL career last week when he made exactly the form of frank acknowledgement that you don’t usually hear by some qualified athlete.
The Seattle Seahawks‘ longtime No. 1 recipient immediately answered in the affirmative when asked when the harms he has coped with — five of them since the summer — possess him feeling like he is about the downside of his livelihood.
“Oh, I am on the downside,” he said. “I’m 30 yrs of age “
Maybe so, but a reminder which Baldwin still has plenty of good football left came two days later, when he caught a pair of first half touch down passes in Seattle’s loss to the sanfrancisco 49ers.
For the initial person, he made an over-the-shoulder grab with his arms outstretched on a floating pass out of Russell Wilson toward the rear corner of the end zone. The second one had a high degree of difficulty, with Baldwin jump and twisting his body in midair to pluck a Wilson subdue throw prior to diving across the goal line through telephone.
All of the catches for 77 yards came on down. The game could haven’t made it had there been a fifth.
“I feel this was a long time coming. We are working busily trying to receive my body right. It’s merely been a practice. … I’m finally feeling like my normal self. I think we figured out to night , before the match , we figured out the previous element of making sure my body is still staying healthy”
If that sounds familiar, it will.
Six days later Baldwin scored his first touchdown in Week 11 against Green Bay, Carroll said he was sensing the best he had felt throughout the season. To that point, Baldwin had missed a couple of training camp with a patellar injury in one knee and two-and-a-half games once he hurt the MCL in his other knee in the opener, which snapped his chain of 8 9 consecutive games played. Contrary to the Raiders at London at Week 6, he hyperextended his elbow and suffered what he called a rest of his ulnar collateral ligament, which he has been playing through.
On the afternoon Carroll declared Baldwin to be as healthy as he was, Baldwin hurt his groin in practice. Injury No. 5 — this someone to his hip — came nine days later. He was competent to play with in Seattle’s first meeting against the 49ers but has been inactive against Minnesota another week.
“For a guy who lives with such high expectations and has such an enormous work ethic and just an wonderful strength about him, too, he simply won’t accept he can’t go, can’t play. He’s broken enough time frames at every injury he’s had to return just because he has worked , of course. He is rehabbed zealously, but he is just kind of willed it to occur.
“That has been great to see him have a huge game and look effective for all of us. It’s simply been frustrating for him. He has not managed enough to get it going with the consequences he knows he can do and we know he can do, so it is a major deal. It is possible to observe he and Russ were really hooking up and made a few excellent plays [Sunday], essential third downs and big plays and that. It’s great to have him back doing his thing “
The Seahawks (8-6) need Baldwin to remain in activity as they try to procure a wild card berth within the season’s final two weeks. Just look at the gap in Wilson’s death amounts together and without Baldwin this season. With Baldwin off the field, Wilson’s completion rate is a lot more than 6.5 percent worse, and his passer rating is nearly 40 points lower.
But as Wilson put it, having Baldwin”creates a huge gap” to get Seattle’s crime. That is correct although he is having one of their very productive seasons of his livelihood, together with 41 catches for 465 yards and four touchdowns, all of which he has scored the past four games.
“He is one of my favorite guys to ever play with just because he is a competitor. He knows how to do every thing right. He is smart as it gets. He is as blessed as it receives “
And he hopes he is finally healthy.
Baldwin struck a cautiously optimistic note in that respect.
“I felt more like myself,” Baldwin said of Sunday’s game. “My body is beginning to respond to the procedure, and hopefully it stays this way. I have to give a lot of credit to our training team. They will have been dealing for over four weeks currently trying to receive my body right, so I’m just grateful to feel good “