Pete Carroll talked for about a half hour on a number of issues his team needs to address during the offseason this afternoon
Among them, Carroll acknowledged the lack of a consistent pass rush this season, and said the Seahawks will address that by looking to add guys to the mix of players already on the roster.
“We need another pass rusher,” Carroll said. “We really do. That’s why we went out and got Jason (Jones) last year. And we’re going to have to double it up. We need a couple of guys.”
Along with improving personnel, Carroll said he’ll count on young guys like rookies Greg Scruggs, Jaye Howard and Bruce Irvin improving during the offseason.
Asked if Jones showed enough to warrant bringing him back with his one-year up once free agency begins, Carroll was diplomatic.
“We thought he did some good things,” Carroll said about Jones. “We’ll see how that works out. There’s a lot of work to be done to get that done, with a one-year contract. So we’ll see where that fits. But he did some nice stuff.”
Carroll said that Chris Clemons has not had surgery to repair an ACL and meniscus tear in his left knee suffered against Washington two weeks ago.
However, Carroll said that Clemons plans to meet with renowned orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews early this week, and that his knee did not suffer that much trauma, so he could have the surgery done relatively soon.
Carroll said that he felt Marshawn Lynch was not limited by a foot injury that kept him out of practice most of the week.
“I don’t think we made as much space for him,” Carroll said. “I think they did a nice job playing defense against us. We had so many opportunities in the throwing game, it was just there. And so we just kept exercising it.”
Carroll joked that Wilson’s ready to get after it right now, but he told him to at least take the honeymoon with wife Ashton.
“He said, ‘Oh yeah, we’re going to go away for a week!’” Carroll said. “Poor girl.”
Seriously though, one of the things Seattle will benefit from is being mostly healthy heading into the offseason.
Carroll said that offensive lineman James Carpenter is expected to be ready to go once the team’s offseason program begins in March. And other than Clemons, no player is expected to have a significant, off-season surgery.
“Our guys this offseason, rather than having to rehab to get back to practice, they’ll be getting stronger and developing,” Carroll said. “And hopefully we’ll come back bigger and stronger and faster than we were this year.”
Here’s what Carroll had to say about Carpenter: “He absolutely should be healthy. There’s no reason not to be physically right. We’re going to be off for like three months or something. And he’ll be in great shape.
“That’s a really important project for us. James is a really dynamic blocker. And he gives us a different dimension of just force and thrust off the football. And we would love to have him playing for us.”
Hawks open to trading Flynn?
Carroll was asked if he would accommodate backup quarterback Matt Flynn if he requested a trade during the offseason.
There could be interest. As many as 10 teams around the league likely will be looking for an upgrade at quarterback. And this year’s draft has significantly less prospects that can come in and play right away than last year.
The Seahawks signed Flynn to a three-year, $19.5 million deal during the offseason, but Wilson beat him out for the starting job, and the LSU product saw just spot duty in blowout wins over Arizona and Buffalo.
“First off, Matt handled himself really well,” Carroll said. “He never accepted it. I never expected him to. I wanted him to fight the whole way. And if it made him grumpy at times or whatever it made him, that was what was going to happen. But he handled it like a real champion kid. He competed in practice on a regular basis.
“He never did want to accept it. And he still thinks he’s the best quarterback in the program. I admire him for thinking that way. And I forever regret that fact that we never got the chance to see him play very much, just because everything he did was on point. But Russell just never let it happen.
“As we move forward we’re going to figure it out. We’re fortunate that we have two really good football players in the program.”
That said, Carroll also acknowledged that it would be nice to have another quarterback on the roster with a similar skill set in terms of running ability as Wilson.
“We’ve talked a lot about that,” Carroll said. “It would be nice to have another guy that might be able to be a factor that way. There’s some really good kids out there. We’ll see.”
Bevell, Bradley get call backs
Carroll confirmed that after introductory interviews, offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and defensive coordinator Gus Bradley are expected to have more extensive interview sessions with the teams interested in them this week.
Bevell is a candidate for the Chicago Bears head coaching vacancy, and met with team officials down in Atlanta on Saturday. Bradley is a candidate for the Philadelphia Eagles head coaching vacancy, and did the same thing with Eagles officials on Saturday.
“Those guys are both great candidates for those jobs,” Carroll said. “And I have now idea what’s going to happen. … It does create uncertainty for the future, yeah, but we’ve got to figure it out. I’ve been in this situation a lot, so I’m not worried about it. But we’re very prideful at the fact that people are interested in our guys. That’s always cool. And it will also help us attract really good guys to take those spots.”
Wilson expressed concern over the possibility of Bevell moving on.
“Obviously I pray that Coach Bevell stays here, but I also pray for the best for him as well,” Wilson said. “Whatever is best for him and his family, but at the same time he really helped me develop.
“We’ve grown a tremendous relationship over the past season, and we’ve really grown a lot in terms of play calling and just in terms of me knowing what he’s going to call and expecting a call.
Added receiver Sidney Rice, who also played for Bevell in Minnesota: “He has the ability to control our offense, get the ball down the field, incorporate the running game. He’s done a wonderful job, and he deserves the opportunity.”
Cornerback Richard Sherman said Bradley would be missed on the defensive side of the ball as well.
“It would be a tough blow to lose Gus,” Sherman said. “Obviously we have a couple of other coaches who would be happy to step up, to run the same thing that we’ve been running.
“But he’s a great coach, he’s enthusiastic, he’s energetic, he’s a players coach. There’s not enough verbs and nouns in the dictionary to describe all the great things about Gus Bradley.”