Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll (left) talks with general manager John Schneider before a game against the Los Angeles Rams on Oct. 3, 2019, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll (left) talks with general manager John Schneider before a game against the Los Angeles Rams on Oct. 3, 2019, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Seahawks’ Carroll and Schneider deserve recognition

Seattle’s head coach and general manager are as much to thank for this season’s success as anyone.

We can start with the guys that have been out there: Jadeveon Clowney, Quandre Diggs, Jacob Hollister — impact players who weren’t in a Seattle Seahawks uniform before training camp began.

We can also talk about the guys who have been out: Justin Britt, Will Dissly, Jarran Reed — impact players who missed significant time or are done for the season.

And when you consider the departures of Pro Bowlers such as Earl Thomas and Doug Baldwin, and when you observe the warp-speed improvement of the defense, and when you see a record that defies logic and spits on expectations — you gotta look at the men who built and coach this team and say …

Dang.

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider appear to be co-painting another masterpiece. Whether it’s adding talent, replacing talent or squeezing every last drop of the talent they have, the duo has helped revive Super Bowl expectations in Seattle.

Yes, quarterback Russell Wilson is playing the best football of his career. And yes, a couple wayward field-goal attempts have lightened the load in the loss column. But as Wilson finds himself in the thick of the MVP conversation amid Seattle’s 9-2 start, are Carroll and Schneider not prime candidates for the top coach and executive honors?

First, a look at the acquisitions. In August, Schneider made a Porsche-for-peanuts deal with the Texans in which he dealt Barkevious Mingo and Jacob Martin — two guys who wouldn’t be recognized in a Bellevue QFC — for Clowney, a three-time Pro Bowl defensive end. When Will Dissly — the fourth-round draft pick who had 262 receiving yards through his first six games — went down with an Achilles’ tendon injury in mid-October, Schneider snagged Hollister, who had eight catches vs. San Francisco and the game-winning touchdown reception vs. Tampa Bay.

Diggs had a 44-yard interception return vs. the 49ers in his first game as a Seahawk. Josh Gordon had two critical first-down receptions in his Seahawks debut that same night. All of these guys have been money, and they came at virtually no cost.

It isn’t easy building a team after making your quarterback the NFL’s highest-paid player. Last season, none of the six highest-paid QBs in the league made the playoffs. But when you’re getting top-flight production from receivers such as Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf — the first of whom is the 31st highest-paid player at his position and the second of whom is a rookie — you’re going to succeed. And when Rashaad Penny, your first-round pick of a running back, breaks out for 129 yards on 14 carries like he did Sunday, you’re going to excel.

Still, no matter how gifted a coach’s players might be, he still has to figure out how to mold them into a cohesive unit. And Carroll, as he repeatedly does, has accomplished just that.

He rebuilt a secondary that lost Thomas, Richard Sherman and Kam Chancellor in a two-season span. He has watched his pass rush flourish over the past two games, as the once-shoddy defense resembled that of the NFL’s elite.

Sure, there have been some clock-management issues and a head-scratching obsession with challenging pass-interference calls, but the poise to be undefeated on the road and in games decided by four points or fewer? That has to, at least in part, come from the incessant gum-chewer in a headset.

After that win over San Francisco two Mondays ago, actor Matthew McConaughey tweeted that if “you give Pete Carroll a glass of water, he turns it into a lake and goes skiing on it.” Good line. But I’d say that Schneider has given him a lake that he can navigate no matter how choppy the waters get.

Whether it’s Britt, the starting center, losing his season to an ACL tear, or Reed, the top defensive lineman from last year, serving a six-game suspension, the Seahawks haven’t wavered. They’ve been among the league’s biggest surprises this year and seem assured to log their seventh 10-win season in the past eight years.

There are lot of guys in uniform who deserve credit for that, but the same is true of guys not wearing helmets. This might not be Carroll and Schneider’s best team, but it’s among their finest work.

Talk to us

More in Sports

FILE - Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda autographs a baseball in the Dodgertown locker-room in Vero Beach, Fla., in this Wednesday, Feb. 15, 1990, file photo. Tommy Lasorda, the fiery Hall of Fame manager who guided the Los Angeles Dodgers to two World Series titles and later became an ambassador for the sport he loved during his 71 years with the franchise, has died. He was 93. The Dodgers said Friday, Jan. 8, 2021, that he had a heart attack at his home in Fullerton, California. Resuscitation attempts were made on the way to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly before 11 p.m. Thursday.  (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)
Former Cascade baseball coach remembers time with MLB legend

Bob Smithson spent time in the minor leagues playing against up-and-coming manager Tommy Lasorda.

Seattle Sounders forward Jordan Morris (13) in the second half of an MLS soccer match Sunday, Nov. 1 2020, in Commerce City, Colo. The Rapids won 3-1. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Sounders star Morris may leave team to play in Europe

The 26-year-old forward is reportedly in talks with Swansea City AFC.

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) talks with head coach Pete Carroll before an NFL football game against the New England Patriots, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Seahawks’ Wilson: ‘We want to win more Super Bowls’

The star quarterback says he expects to have input on who will be the next offensive coordinator.

Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Poona Ford turns away from the field as he stands at the bench late in the second half of Seattle’s playoff loss to the Los Angels Rams last Saturday at Lumen Field. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
POLL RESULTS: Seahawks’ season was not a success

Despite Seattle going 12-4, more than double the voters considered the season a failure than a success.

Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) gets instruction from quarterbacks coach Pep Hamilton during an NFL football game against the Las Vegas Raiders, Sunday, Nov. 8, 2020, in Inglewood, Calif. The most recognizable trend in hiring NFL head coaches has been to target young, innovative offensive teachers with a track record of developing quarterbacks. (AP Photo/Peter Joneleit)
Who will become Seahawks’ next offensive coordinator?

A look at some candidates who may be able to step in for the recently ousted Brian Schottenheimer.

Lakewood's Landen Pruitt runs the ball during the 2A State playoff game against Sequim on Friday, Nov. 15, 2018 in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
WIAA announces another change to prep sports schedule

The announcement comes after new plans from the governor. Wesco is still submitting its own proposal.

Washington forward Hameir Wright (13) shoots between Southern California forward Isaiah Mobley (3) and forward Evan Mobley (4) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
UW men lose to USC, fall to 1-10 on season

The Huskies remain winless in Pac-12 play after a 95-68 road loss to the Trojans.

Gonzaga forward Drew Timme (2) shoots while pressured by Pepperdine forward Kene Chukwuka (24) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Spokane, Wash., Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
No. 1 Gonzaga overcomes poor 1st half, rolls past Pepperdine

The Bulldogs were up just four at halftime, but cruise down the stretch to win 95-70.

Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider walks on the field during warmups before an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams, Thursday, Oct. 3, 2019, in Seattle. The Seahawks have agreed to a contract extension with general manager John Schneider that will keep him tied to the franchise through the 2027 draft. The Seahawks announced Schneider’s extension on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021, three days after their season ended in a 30-20 loss to the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC wild-card playoff game. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Seahawks agree to contract extension with Schneider

The well-regarded general manager is now tied to the team through the 2027 draft.

Most Read