'Microfracture' key word on Chester Pitts

The Seattle Seahawks were excited about working veteran guard Chester Pitts into their offensive line this season.

PittsPitts"Chester should be ready to go here," coach Pete Carroll said Wednesday. "This has been a few weeks of him getting a lot of practice reps."

The Seahawks cut Pitts on Thursday because his surgically repaired knee was not keeping up as he came closer to a potential return. He suffered the injury early last season while with Houston. Pitts, like former Seahawks tackle Walter Jones, had undergone microfracture knee surgery, a procedure of last resort for athletes without sufficient cartilage in the joint.

Carroll never gave the impression Pitts was struggling in his rehabilitation. But the word "microfracture" lets us know an athlete will have a hard time coming back. Jones never played again after his microfracture procedure.

Seattle signed recently released guard Mike Gibson to its practice squad. The team also recently signed offensive linemen Allen Barbre and Breno Giacomini to its 53-man roster.

Removing Pitts from the equation diminishes the potential for Seattle's line. Pairing him with rookie first-round choice Russell Okung on the left side would have been a best-case scenario for the team. Ben Hamilton has been the starting left guard, but he's 33 and more of a stopgap than long-term solution.

The move to release Pitts does not prevent Pitts from continuing his rehab. It does not prevent the Seahawks from re-signing him down the line. Carroll will presumably explain the situation in the near future.

Update: That could indeed happen.