The Seahawks, in need of a kicker after Steven Hauschka was placed on injured reserve this week, ended up signing long-time veteran Ryan Longwell.
Ryan Divish of the Tacoma (Wash.) News Tribune writes that Longwell’s career can come full circle if he can make a big kick for the team he rooted for as a kid:
RENTON — All Ryan Longwell has to do now is kick the winning field goal in this Sunday’s NFC divisional playoff game against the Atlanta Falcons to make the story complete.
The previous Sunday evening, he was sitting on his couch in Orlando, Fla., thinking about the upcoming Walt Disney World Marathon that he and his wife were scheduled to run this weekend.
A day later, he was at the Virginia Mason Athletic Complex where he was among four players trying out for Seahawks coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider.
On Tuesday, he was introduced as the new kicker for the Seattle Seahawks, replacing the injured Steven Hauschka, who was placed on injured reserve with a strained calf muscle.
It’s been a whirlwind for the 15-year veteran, who has spent this season working out and hoping for another chance in the NFL. He’s passed on a few opportunities, but this one felt right.
Because in a way, Longwell is coming home.
Born in Seattle and raised for a good portion of his youth in Puyallup before moving to Bend, Ore., in ninth grade, Longwell grew up following Jim Zorn and Steve Largent and cheering on the Seahawks.
“It’s kind of fun to come full
circle and be back here and hopefully help this team win,” Longwell said.
The Puget Sound roots run deep in Longwell. He went to Seahawks games in the Kingdome with his grandfather. Now he will be kicking for them.
“It’s an honor to put on the helmet that you grew up watching,” Longwell said.