Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson takes key step, has pin removed from repaired right finger

RENTON, Wash. -- Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson had the pin removed from his surgically repaired right middle finger, a key step in his return from the most significant injury of his career.

But the question remains of whether Wilson will be ready to play against the Packers at Lambeau Field on Nov. 14 after the Seahawks (3-5) return from this week's bye.

Wilson posted a picture Monday afternoon of his removed pin with the caption, "No more Pin. Time to Win." That was about an hour after coach Pete Carroll told reporters that he still didn't know when it would be removed.

"I don't know when it's coming out and I don't have any updates for you," Carroll said. "Really, we're just kind of hoping for the best in terms of his return and that everything is handled really well as we get him in the mode where he starts to use his hand and his finger with the football and all that. So we've just got to do a good job and see what happens. There's no updates as of now."

The removal of the pin is far from the final step in Wilson's return, according to Carroll. He said the team has been told that Wilson's finger will then need to heal for "a couple of days" before he can resume throwing.

"It's how he works after that's out and he's ready to start developing," Carroll said. "It's more that. There's a pretty clear-cut timeframe they think for the couple days after that is removed and then it's just how he can progress. Of course, the docs are going to take a look at it and see what it looks like now once he gets it out. That will be the first time he'll be able to bend his finger, so we've got to see how that works out."

Wilson had surgery on Oct. 8, a day after he banged his hand against Aaron Donald on a follow-through in the third quarter of the Seahawks' loss to the Los Angeles Rams. According to Dr. Steven Shin, who operated on Wilson, the surgery was to repair a tendon rupture (mallet finger) and a fracture-dislocation.

That landed Wilson on injured reserve, snapping his streak of 149 consecutive starts to begin his career. He's is eligible to return from IR now that he has missed the required three games. Monday, when the Seahawks return from their bye, will mark four weeks and three days since Wilson's surgery. ESPN's Jeremy Fowler and Adam Schefter initially reported that Wilson could return in as soon as four weeks post-surgery.

On Sunday morning, Wilson posted pictures showing the stitches removed from his finger and the end of the pin sticking out of it.

Later that day, Geno Smith made his third start for Wilson and led the Seahawks to a 31-7 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars to snap a three-game losing streak. Smith accounted for three touchdowns and no turnovers in his best performance since Wilson went down.

Carroll had a more encouraging update on Chris Carson than the one he shared last Friday, when he suggested it wasn't certain that the running back would return this season from his neck injury. Carson is planning on practicing next week with an eye toward returning at Green Bay, though Carroll isn't sure that he'll be able to play in that game.

Carson has missed the past four games and has spent three on IR, meaning he's also eligible to return. He'll be examined by doctors on Monday to determine if he's ready to resume practicing.

"So then we'll find out where he stands once we get to practice," Carroll said. "He's real determined to get that done, so I'm going to keep my fingers crossed for him that he can get a chance to get back on the field and start working with us. That's about as optimistic as we can be until we know more."

Alex Collins has started all four of the games Carson has missed, rushing 61 times for 227 yards and a touchdown in that span.

Cornerback D.J. Reed appears to be OK after leaving Sunday's game with a pulled groin, per Carroll. He said an MRI came back clear.