Seattle tight end Ed Dickson will see his first action with his new team Sunday at Detroit ending what was for him a long two months waiting to get back on the field.
"To have to sit back and watch your brothers go to war, it's kind of hard," Dickson told reporters today. "But it teaches you some things at my old age, patience and stuff like that. But I'm excited to be back. I'm excited to contribute to the team."
Dickson, 31, began the season on the physically unable to perform list with a non-football related issue reportedly to his quadriceps. Going on the PUP list required Dickson to miss the first six weeks. Seattle (3-3) was off last week so Dickson will make his debut against the Lions (3-3). His role, however, has yet to be defined.
"Whatever it is, if it's blocking, if it's catching, if it's special teams, I'm just chomping at the bit to get out there," Dickson said.
Seattle signed Dickson as a free agent last offseason to replace Jimmy Graham as the starter. Dickson, who spent the previous four seasons with Carolina, is known more for being a strong blocking tight end than he is as a receiver. One of his best receiving games ever came at Detroit last season when he caught five passes for 175 yards.
Quarterback Russell Wilson said Dickson will be crucial for the team moving forward while calling the former Oregon star a very physical and smart, veteran player who pays attention to detail.
"The thing about how many years he’s played, it’s exciting to have a vet like that just to be on the team, because he could make a lot of great plays for us," Wilson said. "I think he’s going to be a crucial part to our success for the rest of the season for sure.”
Seattle coach Pete Carroll said that Dickson, who was limited in practice on Wednesday but went full go today, would give Seattle a lot of options at the tight end position.
"In the offense they were in at Carolina, (the Panthers were) very creative with what they did with their tight ends and he was involved with all kinds of stuff," Carroll said. "He’s been placed all over the field. He’s been in the backfield, he’s been out of the backfield, so all of that really gives us confidence. There’s stuff that we can do with him that we’re looking forward to, but really he has not practiced with us very much. We’re kind of opening up the Christmas present here. It’s kind of fun to get him going. ”
Dickson had been frustrated about not being able to play earlier in the season. He said today that he believed he could have played in the opener at Denver. However, he didn't want to second-guess team management.
"Personally you might feel like you're ready before you really are," he said.
Now he is officially ready to go and the timing couldn't be better for Seattle. Rookie Will Dissly started in place of Dickson before being lost for the season with a knee injury at Arizona in Week 4. Nick Vannett started the last two games. Dickson's return gives the team strong depth once again at tight end.
Whatever his role, Dickson said he is ready to show his team that he has their backs and that they can count on him.
"I'm competing to win," he said. "We're in the thick of things. We're going after a playoff shot."