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Pete Carroll not putting a timeline on QB battle between Geno Smith, Drew Lock: 'I'm going to take the time it takes to figure it out'

Drew Lock's return from the COVID-19 list on Sunday sets up a week of questions surrounding the Seattle Seahawks starting quarterback gig heading into the final preseason game, Friday against the Dallas Cowboys.

At this point, head coach Pete Carroll continues to play coy.

"I'll talk to you more about it later in the week, or I won't. I'm not sure," he quipped about his plans, via the team's official website.

Beyond who will start in the preseason finale, Lock should see a bulk of reps after missing last week's tilt due to the positive test.

Geno Smith has taken most of the reps with the starters, but upon returning to practice Sunday, Lock was splitting the snaps with the No. 1 offense.

"He did OK today. He seemed to bounce back," Carroll said of Lock. "He's six, seven days into it now, so he's in good shape as far as getting back. But you never know until you get out there and start running around. He hung in there, tough, so that's good."

With Lock out, Smith had a chance to run away with the starting gig. He didn't, which leaves the door open for Lock to swipe the job.

Carroll said there is no "date pressure" when he needs to announce a starter.

"I'm going to take the time it takes to figure it out and make sure we have all the information that we need," he said. "I can't wait to see what happens in this game. Geno's done a good job and Geno needs a little more help from some guys—they got to be able to catch the football a little better -- but he's handled it well. You go back, Drew has had three drives and had two touchdown drives, so he's put some stuff on the resume out there. So we'll see what happens this week. And we do have really good weeks of practice coming up. This week is a great one, next week is a great one and the one after is a great one so we'll use all of that if we need it."

The deadline will essentially be Sept. 12, when the Seahawks welcome Russell Wilson back to Seattle with his new Denver Broncos club for Monday Night Football. But the softer deadline is well before that, so whoever wins the starting gig can get as many reps as possible to ramp up for the opener.

Throughout the process, Carroll has given the edge to Smith, seemingly hoping the veteran will run away with the gig and make life easier. That hasn't happened. Lock has his shot Friday against Dallas to change what seemed like a predestined outcome in this QB battle.

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