Branch, Houshmandzadeh back for ‘Hawks

Leon Washington got back on the field for the first time on Tuesday, but that’s not the only positive offseason injury news for the Seahawks.

Washington’s quicker-than-expected return from a broken leg is certainly the June storyline in Seattle — and he’ll eventually be eased into the backfield competition with Julius Jones and Justin Forsett — but notable returns were also made by receivers Deion Branch and T.J. Houshmandzadeh on Tuesday.

Branch and Houshmandzadeh returned to limited drill work, per Seahawks.com, and are expected to be fully recovered for training camp. Branch is back following arthroscopic knee surgery, while Houshmandzadeh is recovering from surgery to repair a sports hernia, according to The Seattle Times.

How Branch, Houshmandzadeh and the rest of the receivers — rookie Golden Tate, former first-round pick Reggie Williams, the multi-talented Isaiah Stanback, plus Deon Butler and Ben Obomanu — stack up in Jeremy Bates’ version of the West Coast offense will be interesting to watch.

Arguably, the Seahawks don’t have a defined No. 1 receiver, a point Pete Carroll has acknowledged. But Bates, the Broncos’ offensive coordinator in 2008, has shown he’ll feed his top receiver, a point Greg Johns of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer blogged has left Houshmandzadeh optimistic.

I’m convinced Bates will feed Houshmandzadeh for triple-digit receptions this season, which shouldn’t be considered a reach, but that might be a better topic left for fantasy head Michael Fabiano.

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