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Seahawks' Trufant healthy, ready for NFC showdown with Bucs

RENTON, Wash. -- Coach Pete Carroll hasn't seen an injury report this small in more than two months.

And it couldn't come at a better time for his Seattle Seahawks.

Carroll said Friday the Seahawks (6-8) will face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as healthy as they have been in quite awhile, entering a crucial game with playoff implications for both teams.

Wins by Seattle in its final two games will wrap up the NFC West title.

The best piece of news that the Seahawks received involves cornerback Marcus Trufant, who will be able to play after leaving last Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons with back spasms.

"There's just a couple questions going into the game at all, and what we were hoping to have," Carroll said. "So we're very fortunate in that, and again like I said, I hope that that helps us."

Carroll isn't kidding when it comes to the Seahawks' health. The only player listed as questionable on Friday's injury report was linebacker Will Herring, who has a hamstring injury.

It's the first time since Seattle's bye week in early October that there isn't at least more than one player listed as questionable, doubtful or out on the final injury report. A large number of those players have ended up being put on injured reserve -- such as defensive tackle Junior Siavii earlier this week.

Trufant didn't practice Wednesday or Thursday, but returned to practice Friday. He was listed as probable, along with linebacker Lofa Tatupu (knee), Chris Spencer (shoulder) and Chris Clemons (ankle).

Trufant left just before halftime last week against the Falcons, and Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan immediately picked on backup Kennard Cox, including a 24-yard touchdown pass to Michael Jenkins just before halftime to give his team a 17-10 lead. Trufant said his back started to loosen up as the game progressed but not enough that he could return.

The injury also sparked a little worry in the veteran cornerback after he missed the first six games of the 2009 season with back issues. But after talking with the doctors early in the week, Trufant was put at ease that this wasn't related to his previous back problems.

"That was one of the first things that came to my mind, but not a lot of the same feelings," Trufant said. "So after I got it checked out, after the doctors looked at it, I was pretty confident that I'd be back."

Siavii was placed on injured reserve Thursday, after his injury proved more serious than the Seahawks first thought. Siavii suffered a stinger when he collided with Atlanta's Michael Turner in the fourth quarter last Sunday.

Carroll said Friday that Siavii has an "issue with his spinal cord," but that he's not in any danger. Carroll said there was concern about bruising of the spinal cord that didn't show up on an MRI exam, but Siavii showed all the symptoms.

"He just needs time. It's the right thing to do for us, and it's going to be about a month, at least," Carroll said. "So not knowing what we're going to do, we needed to make a move right now."

Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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