Around the NFC West: Branch back, Forsett gone

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times says Deion Branch participated in the 11-on-11 portion of practice with the Seahawks Wednesday. The team now expects to hold out Branch and Bobby Engram for the next two games. So go ahead and disregard the previously established "hope" that Branch would be back for the opener.

Also from O'Neil: Jordan Kent is back on Seattle's practice squad, but the Colts claimed running back Justin Forsett off waivers. Forsett was impressive in the exhibition season, but so was Kent, albeit not the same degree.

And this as well: audio from Mike Holmgren about possibly bringing back Koren Robinson. Holmgren said he would be "fine" with bringing back Robinson. We all know team president Tim Ruskell makes the call, and Ruskell was the one who released Robinson before Seattle made its Super Bowl run in 2005. Holmgren might not have released Robinson at that time.

Clare Farnsworth of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer says Forsett's departure made for emotional goodbyes at Seahawks practice. The other running backs loved him.

Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic says nose tackles Gabe Watson and Alan Branch were back at practice after rehabbing injuries. The Cardinals need them to shore up their run defense.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee says 49ers quarterback Alex Smith will wait before deciding whether to undergo additional surgery on his season-ending shoulder injury.

Barrows also thinks 49ers coach Mike Nolan wasn't being candid by saying he didn't know specifics of Smith's injury.

Matt Maiocco of Instant 49ers checks in with Holmgren on a conference call. Holmgren wouldn't rule out taking a job anywhere in the NFL after stepping away from the game for the 2009 season. Not that the 49ers could use a Super Bowl-winning figure with ties to the organization and credibility to spare.

Also from Maiocco: Some of Alex Smith's teammates had no idea the quarterback had been placed on injured reserve.

Bill Coats of Around the Horns says the Rams' home game against the Giants has sold enough tickets to lift a local blackout. We know what that means in St. Louis.