Seahawks middle linebacker Bobby Wagner (54) gestures to the officials during the first half of a game against the Falcons on Sept. 13, 2020, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Danny Karnik)

Seahawks middle linebacker Bobby Wagner (54) gestures to the officials during the first half of a game against the Falcons on Sept. 13, 2020, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Danny Karnik)

Seahawks defense bringing the boom back?

Despite big yardage allowed vs. Atlanta, Pete Carroll was thrilled with his team’s physical play.

By Bob Condotta / The Seattle Times

RENTON — The Seattle Seahawks’ defensive numbers Sunday at Atlanta hardly indicated a team that has turned the corner from last year’s struggles.

The Seahawks gave up 506 yards, which ranks 31st in the NFL after one week, and 7.8 yards per play, which ranks 27th.

But a healthy chunk of the yards came late in the 38-25 win over the Falcons.

And to Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, it was how they played that he felt made the louder statement, especially middle linebacker Bobby Wagner and strong safety Jamal Adams patrolling the middle of the field.

“I thought Bobby played his best game pass defense-wise that he’s ever played,” Carroll said. “Active, and on point with the breaks he was making. He impacted our play quite a bit. You couldn’t miss the play by Jamal running and hitting. I thought Q Diggs (safety Quandre Diggs), too, had some good top-off and some nice plays, too. As well as the rest of the guys. (Lano) Hill, Marquise (Blair). Having all the speed on the field, we’re faster than we’ve been. It shows up in our pursuit.”

What also caught Carroll’s eye is the attitude the team carries on the field.

“The nature of these guys, they’re going for it,” Carroll said. “I love it. I love the way we were able to show first time out how we want to play.

“There’s a lot of improvement to be had, but I’m glad that the message was clear, that we’re coming to knock the (heck) out of you when you play us. That was fun.”

Carroll says he’s on five-year plan

Carroll turned 69 on Tuesday and has two years remaining on the contract extension he signed at the end of the 2018 season.

But as he said on the day he signed that deal, Carroll reiterated Wednesday he’s not looking at any specific end point to his career.

During a Zoom call with reporters who cover the Patriots on Wednesday, Carroll was asked who would retire first — him or Bill Belichick, who succeeded him as coach of the Patriots in 2000.

“I don’t know, ask him,” Carroll said. “I’m feeling great, and I’m kind of on a five-year plan. Five years from now I’ll figure it out and I’ll reassess, I actually owe that to (author) David Brooks. He taught me that awhile back in something he wrote — why are you looking year to year, why don’t you just plan it out over a five-year period? It was five years last year, five years this year, we’ll figure it out when the time comes.”

Asked if that means it’s five years every year, Carroll said: “There you go. Kind of a rollover approach.”

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