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Sweezy ‘blessed’ to be back with Seahawks after ‘hardest year of my life’

Seattle Seahawks offensive lineman J.R. Sweezy. Photo: Q13 News.

RENTON, Wash. – J.R. Sweezy lived a lifetime in the two years he was gone from Seattle.

The Seahawks’ seventh-round draft pick in 2012, Sweezy battled injuries for two season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before injuries cut his time there short and he opted to sign on to return to Seattle on Wednesday. The offensive guard missed all of the 2016 season, then played 14 games of the 2017 season before breaking his leg and ultimately being released by the Bucs in June.

“That was the hardest year of my life, not playing football that season,” Sweezy said at the VMAC on Thursday after practice. “Unfortunately I had the injury, got it fixed, and it just took a little longer than expected to get better. But luckily, Lord willing, I made a full recovery and I’m back to myself again.

“It took me a full year to feel back to myself.”

Sweezy said the Seahawks approached him immediately after he was released, and that while he had interest from a handful of other teams, he “knew in my heart” he wanted to go back to the Seahawks. He laughed that he “learned a lot about the heat” in Tampa Bay.

“I guess nobody’s expecting to be released,” Sweezy said. “I was a little taken aback, if you will. But it is what it is, it’s the NFL. I’m just blessed to be out here where I started and continue my career.

Sweezy weighs in at 310 pounds, the biggest he’s been in his NFL career, and said he’s ready to play anywhere along the line the Seahwaks see fit. It’s likely he’ll be in the mix for one of the starting guard spots, along with Ethan Pocic and D.J. Fluker.

Immediately after signing, Sweezy jumped on FaceTime with quarterback Russell Wilson, and he said he’s happy to reconnect with old friend Justin Britt.

“Just being around this group of guys for a few days now, I really like the camaraderie and how we communicate and how we work,” he said. “I got to see that today. I think there’s gonna be some good things this year, and I’m really looking forward to it.”