Seattle head coach Pete Carroll has a lifetime record of 133-90-1 in stints with Seattle, the New York Jets and the New England Patriots. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

Seattle head coach Pete Carroll has a lifetime record of 133-90-1 in stints with Seattle, the New York Jets and the New England Patriots. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

Is Seahawks’ Pete Carroll a Hall of Fame coach?

His current resumé probably falls short, but with no plan to retire, he may very well wind up in Canton.

The emotion poured out of Bill Cowher and flooded out of Jimmy Johnson. That’s generally what happens when you get a surprise visit from Pro Football Hall of Fame president Dave Baker, as the legendary coaches did two weekends ago. Each learned on live TV that they were going to be enshrined in Canton, Ohio. Each learned that they were going to receive that gold jacket reserved for the greatest performers in NFL history.

The joy on their faces was as inspiring as it was authentic. But it also prompted a question around these parts.

Does Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll have the resume to join those two in the Hall of Fame?

Few will dispute that Carroll is the most successful coach in the organization’s history. And given his consistency, it’s hard to argue that he isn’t one of the best coaches in the NFL today.

The Seahawks have been the surest bet in the NFC to make the playoffs during his 10-year tenure, even amid the frequent departures of Hall of Fame and Ring of Honor talents.

But being good, consistent and pleasantly surprising isn’t enough to secure your place among the best to ever do it. Consistently outstanding is typically the criteria for Canton.

So does Pete’s record measure up?

First, let’s take a look at what Cowher achieved. In his 15 years as a head coach — all with the Pittsburgh Steelers — he went 149-90-1 in the regular season, won eight division titles, reached two Super Bowls and won one of them. He had nine seasons with at least 10 wins, and did most of that with either Neil O’Donnell or Kordell Stewart at quarterback.

It’s a damn fine list of accomplishments — perhaps even finer than Johnson’s.

Yes, the former Dallas Cowboys and Miami Dolphins coach won two Super Bowls in Dallas, but his lifetime record is 80-64, good for a .556 winning percentage. The win total is 59th all time, two less than recently fired Cowboys coach Jason Garrett, and lower than 39 coaches who aren’t in the Hall of Fame. But he’s got two Lombardi trophies, and only 12 other coaches can say that, so he’s in.

But what about Pete?

Well, at this point, he seems to be caught somewhere in the middle of those two.

His lifetime record with the Jets, Patriots and Seahawks is 133-90-1. He has one less Super Bowl win than Johnson, but 53 more regular-season wins. He has the same number of Super Bowl wins and appearances as Cowher, but 16 fewer regular-season wins and four fewer division championships.

There are other retired coaches with one Super Bowl victory and multiple appearances who haven’t been enshrined — such as Dick Vermeil and former Seahawks coach Mike Holmgren. And there are other two-time winners such as Mike Shanahan, Tom Coughlin, George Seifert and Tom Flores who have yet to be inducted.

So what does this mean for Carroll, the oldest coach in football? What, if anything, does he have to tack on to get him into Canton?

Well, another Super Bowl win would guarantee it. With everything else he has done, it would be criminal to keep him out at that point. Another conference title might do it, too. That would put his regular-season win total right up there with Cowher’s if he did it next year, and separate him from Cowher in terms of Super Bowl trips.

Aside from that, though, he just needs to keep racking up wins like he did all last decade.

Even if Carroll doesn’t get to another Big Game, regularly putting the Seahawks in the playoffs will force the voters to pay attention when he finally hangs them up. And given his incessant enthusiasm and All-Pro quarterback Russell Wilson, that retirement date may still be a ways out.

I don’t think Carroll would make it to Canton if he decided to quit tomorrow, although it would be close. But I predict that one day, whether it’s on live TV or not, someone’s going to tell him that, like Cowher and Johnson, he has a gold jacket waiting for him.

Talk to us

More in Sports

Glacier Peak's Aidan Davis is yells while being fouled by Mariner's Dakota Joseph during the game on Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Associated Press high school basketball polls for Jan. 26

Six local teams are ranked in the top-10 of their respective classification. Four others received votes.

Prep results for Wednesday, Jan. 26

Prep results for Wednesday, Jan. 26: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

Mariner's Naser Motley is able to get around Glacier Peak's Bobby Siebers to make a layup during the game on Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Mariner boys beat GP in battle for 1st place atop Wesco 4A

The Marauders ride their defense to a 53-43 win over the No. 7-ranked Grizzlies in a key league clash.

LSU defensive lineman Ali Gaye celebrates after a turnover by Missouri during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020, in Columbia, Mo. (AP Photo/L.G. Patterson)
Community roundup: E-W grad Gaye to return for final season at LSU

Also, nominations for the Snohomish County Sports Hall of Fame’s class of 2022 start Tuesday.

Prep results for Tuesday, Jan. 25

Prep results for Tuesday, Jan. 25: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

Arlington’s Keira Marsh gos for a layup against Snohomish on Monday, Jan. 24, 2022 at Arlington High School. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Arlington girls fend off Snohomish in pivotal league showdown

The Eagles ride their defense to a 57-44 win over the Panthers in a clash of 3A state top-five teams.

Olen Zellweger
Tips prevail during light week despite being short-handed due to COVID

Three players tested positive for COVID before Everett’s only game, but the Tips still won 5-3.

Vote for The Herald’s Prep Athlete of the Week for Jan. 17-23

The Athlete of the Week nominees for Jan. 17-23. Voting closes at… Continue reading

The Shorecrest bench reacts to a missed shot in the final seconds of regular time to send the game against Arlington to overtime on Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2021 in Arlington, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Wave of cancellations wreaking havoc on winter prep sports

‘It’s just been so hard’: Canceled games and program shutdowns have been commonplace for local teams.

Most Read