Tyler Lockett 'ready to go' as he makes Seahawks camp debut
RENTON, Wash. -- Tyler Lockett opened only one gift on Christmas -- and he doesn't even remember what it was.
The Seahawks receiver spent the entire holiday the hospital falling in and out of a drug-induced sleep, part of his treatment for the broken leg he suffered the day before in a game against the Arizona Cardinals.
"I don't remember Christmas," Lockett recalled more than seventh months later after his first action of training camp Friday at the Virginia Mason Athletic Center.
"I probably opened one present and I was halfway sleep off of those (Oxycontin pills)."
Lockett made his training camp debut Friday, running routes and hauling in passes early in the day. His participation means the 5-foot-10, 182-pound wideout is off of the Physically Unable to Perform list he began camp on.
Describing his return after practice, Lockett said he "felt like I was stuck in a cage for eight months," admitting he wasn't even sure what to do once he the field after being cleared to participate.
"So I was just running around, having fun being a little kid again," Lockett said, "being able to be out there with my teammates and everything, which was a great feeling for me. Felt good being able to run routes again and catch balls from Russell (Wilson) and everybody."
Lockett called the months in between his Christmas daze and Friday's on-field action "frustrating," having to spend most of it rehabbing in Seattle, which he said was the toughest part about the process.
"I didn't get to see my family," Lockett said. "I didn't get to see my friends or anybody like that. I can go through an injury; I have no problem with that. But not being able to go through it with the people that been there for me my whole entire life, that's probably the hardest part."
Lockett started running again, feeling back to his normal, speedy self "three months ago" and physically felt able to play, but had to follow the team's orders and sit out.
"I'm pretty much ready to go," Lockett said. "If we had a game tomorrow I'd play in it."
The timeline for Lockett practicing in full capacity remains uncertain, as does his status for the upcoming preseason slate. Seattle plays its first preseason game against the Chargers on Aug. 13, so for now Lockett is being eased back into the mix.
"We're excited to have him back out there," offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell said. "He has such an energy about him, an optimistic outlook on life and he's really a great guy all around."
Though the memory of his hospital stay is fuzzy -- he remembers being bedridden through New Year's Day, but can't pinpoint how long he was hospitalized -- Lockett recalls spending time with his family and receiving visits from several of his teammates and coaches.
He yelled at the hospital television during games, assessing the defense and projecting which plays the offense should run. He wanted to contribute to the team's success, but was merely a spectator, relying on his teammates to deliver in clutch moments.
His injury forced a bit of role reversal, too. The usually jovial 24-year-old was the one with his down, a stark difference from his self-proclaimed role as the "little kid on the team."
"I bring out the kid in everybody," Lockett said. "If I see somebody else down, I do whatever I can to bring them up. So, to be able to see me down, nobody really knows how that feels because I'm always the happy one, I'm always the one jumping around getting on people's nerves all the time.
"It was hard for me able to be in the hospital and watch the games and not be at practice to be the kid and get everybody happy."
That shouldn't be an issue anymore, as Lockett made a significant stride toward a full recovery. Everyone is likely happy about that.
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