RENTON — When it comes to Red Bryant's newborn son, the massive Seahawks defensive end knew there would be certain expectations.
"A lot of people thought he was going to be humongous," said Bryant, listed at 6-foot-4, 323 pounds.
Seattle coach Pete Carroll started the comedy routine Thursday morning, joking on Twitter that the new addition to the Bryant family weighed "17.2 pounds." Seahawks fans continued the fun online through the afternoon.
Joseph Brooks Bryant, born Wednesday night to Red and his wife, Janelle, actually weighed 6 pounds, 15 ounces at birth.
"My wife, she definitely was happy he wasn't 17 pounds," said the new dad with a laugh.
But even when the jokes were over, a sleepy-eyed Bryant couldn't stop smiling.
"I can't describe the feeling — just proud," he said. "He's healthy; he has all his ribs, fingers and toes. I'm just feeling really blessed right now. My wife's doing great. My son's doing great. 2011 has been a great year."
Joseph Brooks is named after Bryant's godmother, Sue Brooks, who died of cancer two years ago. Joseph is also Bryant's given name.
The son-in-law of former Seahawks great Jacob Green, Bryant returned to practice Thursday after missing Wednesday's to be with his wife, a former college soccer player at Texas A&M. While he expects his son to be nicknamed "Little Red" and have some predisposition to athletics — who can argue the genes on both sides of the family? — Bryant said they'll let Joseph develop his own identity.
"He might want to be like Bill Gates or Paul Allen, and be into technology and books and academics," said Bryant, one of the anchors of Seattle's eighth-ranked defense. "We're not going to push him one way or another. ... We're just going to enjoy him."
Pass rush heats up at right time
The Seahawks entered the week tied for 22nd in the league with 29 sacks, but broke through for four in the second half of last week's win in Chicago.
Carroll credited the team's pass coverage and the struggling Bears offense for contributing to the surge of production. Defensive coordinator Gus Bradley said the sacks came from four-man rushes, and the game plan Saturday against the San Francisco 49ers calls for more of the same.
"We're going to have to rely on those guys up front quite a bit," Bradley said.
• Receiver Doug Baldwin did not practice Thursday after aggravating an ankle injury Wednesday, but Carroll thinks the team's leader in catches (46) and receiving yards (731) will be able to play Saturday.
• Defensive tackle Clinton McDonald was limited in practice Thursday as he recovers from a concussion, but has a chance to play according to Carroll. Cornerback Kennard Cox (hamstring) and linebacker Malcolm Smith (concussion) haven't practiced the last two days; Smith is unlikely to be ready against the 49ers.
• Quarterback Tarvaris Jackson (pectoral), linebacker David Hawthorne (knee) and offensive lineman Robert Gallery (pelvis) have been full participants both days of practice.
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