Alexander injury forces Seahawks to cut Kacyvenski

Updated: September 30, 2006, 11:57 AM ET
By Len Pasquarelli | ESPN.com

The foot injury that will sideline the NFL's reigning most valuable player has forced the Seattle Seahawks to part with one of their most popular performers, at least temporarily.

Isaiah Kacyvenski
Kacyvenski

Seattle on Saturday released seventh-year veteran linebacker and special teams standout Isaiah Kacyvenski and elevated running back Marquis Weeks from the practice squad for the Sunday night game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.

The move was dictated by the foot injury suffered by tailback Shaun Alexander, the NFL's most valuable player in 2005, last week. Alexander is expected to miss at least two weeks, and with little depth at tailback, Seattle needed to add another runner.

Fifth-year veteran Maurice Morris will start at tailback. Weeks will be used as a backup and possibly on special teams.

How long Kacyvenski stays unemployed remains to be seen. There is a strong likelihood the Seahawks will want to re-sign him when Alexander is recovered. But Kacyvenski is a vested veteran, technically a free agent, and able to sign with another team. Given his experience and his special teams excellence, he could receive some offers.

The Seahawks' depth at linebacker, and the fact Kacyvenski rarely plays from scrimmage anymore, made him the most expendable player for now.

Kacyvenski, 28, has appeared in 90 games and started in 23 of them. He has 265 tackles, one sack, three interceptions, two passes defensed, three forced fumbles and one recovery, and can play the middle and strongside linebacker spots. On special teams, Kacyvenski has posted 83 tackles, including 21 in 2005, when Seattle advanced to Super Bowl XL.

The former Harvard standout, who overcame poverty and the sudden death of his mother to earn an Ivy League education, is very popular with his teammates.

Weeks first signed with the Seahawks in 2005 as an undrafted college free agent but did not make the roster. The former University of Virginia standout, who played tailback and cornerback for the Cavaliers, re-signed in February.

Len Pasquarelli is a senior NFL writer for ESPN.com. To check out Len's chat archive, click here Insider.