Former Monroe WR Ricardo Lockette had a poor preseason and was cut Friday from the Seahawks.
RENTON, Wash. — Last season, Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll couldn’t stop gushing about the potential he saw in undrafted wideout Ricardo Lockette, a former 200-meter NCAA Division II national champion on the track and a star football player at Fort Valley State.
On Friday, however, Carroll sounded more like he felt Lockette’s position with the Seahawks this year was on the practice squad — the same place “The Rocket” spent much of last season.
The former Monroe star and Albany native was released by the team late Friday night when NFL teams had to turn in their 53-man rosters in anticipation of the regular season opening next week. Lockette may not have made the cut, but he was added to the team’s practice squad, according to a Seattle Times Seahawks blog.
“Receiver Ricardo Lockette, who was not among the six receivers the Seahawks kept on the 53-man roster, indicated (Saturday) via Twitter that he will be staying in Seattle, which would indicate he’s going to sign with the practice squad,” Times reporter Danny O’Neal wrote.
Lockette earlier tweeted: “God Bless America & God Bless the Seattle Seahawks (Cortez Kennedy) headed to the VMAC to confirm ill stay!!!!
The VMAC is an acronym for the Virginia Madison Athletic Center, which serves as the Seahawks’ private training facility.
To see Lockette cut is not a surprise after he was injured for part of the season and struggled when he did take the field. He didn’t record a catch until last week’s 21-3 win against the Oakland Raiders.
Lockette finished that game with four targets and two catches for 15 yards, marking his only two receptions in the preseason.
When Lockette was called up late last season after spending all year on the practice squad, Carroll said he couldn’t wait until fans got to see the pure raw speed that Lockette possessed, affectionately calling him by his nickname during his press conference.
“The Rocket is coming up and we’re happy to make that move,” Carroll said last December. “He’s been practicing like crazy and working like he’s been part of the roster (the whole time) ... He’s been a surprising guy in a number of ways. We weren’t surprised by his great speed. We saw him at the combine and thought he had one of the best workouts at the combine for a guy that came out of nowhere and caught very few balls in college. When we got him here, we found out he could really catch the football. He’s got very natural hands (like a receiver should).”
The Seahawks did keep veteran receivers Braylon Edwards and Ben Obomanu on their final 53-man roster, and waived returning young receivers Deon Butler, former Georgia star Kris Durham and Lockette.
By keeping Edwards and Obomanu, Seattle is moving forward with a six-man receiving group featuring Sidney Rice, Doug Baldwin, Golden Tate and free-agent Charly Martin.
Durham missed the latter half of his rookie season after suffering a torn labrum in his shoulder and requiring surgery. The Seahawks were hoping the lanky receiver with deceptive speed could step into the role that Mike Williams previously held. But it was obvious early in camp the Seahawks were not satisfied with the receiver position and brought in both Edwards and Terrell Owens. Owens was released last weekend, while Edwards might be starting Sept. 9 at Arizona.