The team announced Brown's return Monday and put tight end Ed Dickson on injured reserve in a corresponding roster move.
Brown's release came as a surprise given the Seahawks' frequently-stated plans to incorporate him into their offense more in 2019 compared to last season, when he was their No. 4 receiver in terms of offensive snaps and receptions. He's in line to potentially start alongside Tyler Lockett in Week 1 with David Moore recovering from a shoulder injury and rookie DK Metcalf recovering from knee surgery that has his availability for the opener in question.
Brown was set to make $2.75 million in non-guaranteed base salary this season as part of the two-year, $5.5 million deal he signed last offseason. His release saved $2.75 million against the salary cap while incurring $975,000 in dead money.
Coach Pete Carroll said the Seahawks planned all along to bring back Brown, fullback Nick Bellore and quarterback Geno Smith, whom they also released on cut-down day before re-signing.
"This is really an illustration of trust. They trusted us and we trusted them," Carroll said. "As they went out, we intended to find a way to get them to come back and they believed in us and hung with us and I think there's a lot to say, in that regard, to want to be part of the program and they were willing to wait it out."
Dickson's availability for the start of the season was in question following knee surgery on Aug. 6. By waiting until after cut-down day to put Dickson on IR, the Seahawks can bring him back to their active roster after eight weeks.
Brown's return gives the Seahawks seven receivers on their 53-man roster: Lockett, Brown, Moore, Metcalf, Malik Turner, plus rookie draft picks Gary Jennings Jr. (fourth round) and John Ursua (seventh). With Dickson on IR, they have only two true tight ends in Will Dissly and Nick Vannett. However, backup tackle George Fant is a de facto tight end. Seattle also has Jacob Hollister on its practice squad after the former New England Patriot was waived and went unclaimed over the weekend.
The Seahawks also waived linebacker Austin Calitro. Bellore was released over the weekend. He again becomes the only fullback on their roster.
Calitro can now be claimed on waivers as he's a non-vested veteran.
"He had a fantastic preseason for us. That was a real hard one," Carroll said about Calitro. "He's done everything we ask of a guy. He's a good ball player, he's a great team guy."