Seahawks Insider

Carroll: ‘ I’m hoping that our guys feel comfortable with the expectations’

Post by Todd Dybas / The News Tribune on July 25, 2014 at 9:08 pm with 27 Comments »
July 25, 2014 9:08 pm

Here’s most of what Pete Carroll had to say today:

(On how he’s feeling after coming back from the off season.) It’s great to be back to work. We’ve had a fantastic off season. Guys have worked hard. We’ve had so many opportunities for our players to be together. They really have had a great off season of kind of being connected and staying connected. And everybody pointed at this day getting this thing kicked off. Everybody is coming together with a great attitude. And practice was good and hard and fast today the way we like it. So we’re on the way and we’re really thrilled to be back going at it.

(On Marshawn Lynch not being here) Sure, yeah. I’m disappointed he’s not here. By his choice, you know? I’m really focused on the guys that are here and that have been with us and are working really hard and all. Just a comment about that is we’ve had a substantial plan working for us for years now and Marshawn was a big part of this plan and just a couple of years back, we made a big statement by making big effort for him and we wish he was with us now but this is a tremendous opportunity for the guys that are getting their shot. Robert Turbin and Christine Michael, they’re ready to go and really fired up about this opportunity. We’ll try to take full advantage of it.

(On talking to Marshawn much during off season or recently.) I have. I have talked to him in kind of an ongoing basis.

(On having a deadline for seeing Marshawn here.) No, no. We’re practicing and working real hard and getting going and that’ll take its own course.

(On Carroll’s confidence that something will be worked out with Marshawn.) I’m hoping that he’ll be back with us.

(On things that Coach Carroll would like to see develop and grow in Russell Wilson.) Yeah, we’re trying to keep growing. We’ll keep growing and we want to become more efficient in everything that we’re doing. He’ll just continue to grow. He’ll continue to see things better. He’ll respond quicker. He’ll take advantage of his background more. So he’ll just keep getting better. This is still a real ascending process I think for him and he’s worked so hard at it that he’s going to take full advantage of the experience that he’s had and I can only anticipate that he’s going to be cleaner and sharper at everything that he’s doing.

(On how Coach Carroll deals with the challenges facing a team looking to repeat last year’s success) The challenges of it I think is a mentality about how you go about everything. It isn’t just about this season in response to last season. We’ve had a real clear thought about how we attack every day. The focus that we put on every day and the work that we do on a regular day to day, week to week basis, game to game basis is the same process we’ll use to do whatever you’re suggesting at hand right now. Had we just started the conversation now after a championship season, I’d be wondering what was going to happen, but we’ve been in the mentality we went in to last season. Some peoples’ expectations that we’d be in the Super Bowl and all of that. And we’ve dealt with that at the time and so this is a carryover from that. I’m hoping that our guys feel comfortable with the expectations and that it seems normal for them to have this kind of attention and focus and we’ll deal with it properly by really focusing on what’s at hand each day as it comes to us.

(On the changes of Christine Michael over the past year) Christine had a great off season. He had an off season where he just seemed to grow up. He seemed to become really clear about expectations about the workload, the job, the position that he’s playing, the responsibility of it and all of that. He was just kind of bright eyed as just a young pup his first year, but he made a big shift and it was really obvious. We’ve only had one day here. He had a great off season to lead him into this time, and now we’ll see how he handles it. The opportunity to get this great shot is going to be a factor and I’m hoping that he’ll take full advantage of. It looks like he’s absolutely ready. He’s in great shape. He’s really tuned in. He’s going to get a great opportunity. He and Turbin are going to go at it and compete the heck out of it to see how they do. I’m expecting both guys to contribute and Christine has done everything that we’ve asked him to do and I’m really proud of the progress that he’s made.

(On Coach Carroll seeing everything he wanted to from Paul Richardson and Kevin Norwood so far) No, no, heck no. We just started. That which we’ve seen has been really positive. Those guys have great hands. They have tremendous catching range. They’re natural catching all the balls. They have really obvious receiver instincts and all, but we got to get them banging around; we got to get them into the speed of things, and get them out against our guys with the pads on and all and see how that goes. I don’t anticipate any problem. They look so comfortable and so natural. I think they’re going to be able to contribute. They’re different types of receivers and we’ll see how we can fit them in, but I’m very encouraged at this time.

(On Sidney Rice’s decision to retire) The conversation just came up really the day before. He came up and we started talking about it. He got the word to us. He was real serious about it. He took his time figuring it out and think he’s making a great choice. He’s evaluated very clearly. He’s had a series of injuries and problems staying healthy. He’s had a number of concussions and that goes in to it as well and so he’s very comfortable with the decision. Of course he’s lament that he’s not going to be able to play and all of that but I think he feels strongly that he’s making a good decision and so we support the heck out of him. We’ll miss him and he’ll always be a part of us.

(On the other options that Coach Carroll has at the receiver position) I love our position. The fact that Percy is out here. Remember a year ago, we were talking about on this day, he can’t go. We’re talking about surgery and all. He’s had an extraordinary off season. He looks great. He’s a highly conditioned guy. He looks fantastic and fast our here today right off the bat. So that’s a big deal. The growth of Doug [Baldwin] and Jermaine [Kearse] and our guys and really Ricardo Lockette has done a great job. It’s just obvious that we have a good strong position group and we’re excited about these guys.

(On the players who were not on the field for day one of training camp) As always, at this time, we’re really being patient. With Bruce [Irvin] in particular, he’s coming off of surgery. He looks fantastic. He thinks he can do everything, but we’re going to take our time. We’ll probably work it all the way through camp to see how the progress goes. We want to make sure we’re right so that once he comes back, he’s good and ready to go. Russell got a little bit of work to do -Russell Okung – in the walk throughs. He’s just days away from kind of proving it. It might take him, if we’re conservative, maybe a couple of weeks and we’ll take our time there. Kam Chancellor is really close and ready to go. He’s champing at the bit to go. Both of those guys are running right now in the VMAC and getting their conditioning work done. And both went through walk throughs so they’re close. So expect them back soon.

(On Korey Toomer) He’s got a nagging hamstring, I just saw him in there running. He’s not ready yet, it’ll be maybe a couple more weeks before he’s ready to go. It’s unfortunate because he had such a great offseason, we were so excited about him and he was so excited about this chance but we’re just going to have to wait it out.

(On replicating Marshawn Lynch’s skill set) He’s a pretty unusual football player. He’s got a lot of great, unique qualities about him. We’re going to still run the football, we’ve run the ball over 1,000 times the last couple years so we’re going to keep doing that, none of that is going to change. The attitude that he’s brought in the last few years has been significant, when we were trying to make our mark as a physical football team he stood right at the front of that – but I think we’ve accomplished that now. That’s our mentality and our make-up and we’re grateful that he was a part of that. We’d like to get him back into it.

(The improvement of Christine Michael from year one to year two) He’s just so much more consistent with his assignments and responsibilities, his readiness is there. He seems calm and poised about taking advantage of this opportunity, he looks ready to go. He’s a very talented kid who we’re really excited about, he’s our biggest running back back there and he’s probably the fastest as well. He just seems to have embraced this step and this level and he just gets it now. You can tell he’s much more comfortable.

(On the health of Eric Pinkins and Malcolm Smith) Eric’s got a little Lisfranc injury, he was running two days ago and he was running with it. But it did show up in our physicals that we did, we’re going to have to take care of him, it’s going to take 4-6 weeks I think before he’ll be back. Malcolm’s close, he’s been running and working out, you know he had surgery and we’re just making sure once he gets back he can stay back. He has to show that he can tolerate the work day after day after day, until that happens we’ll still take it easy on him. We’ll get him when we get him, it might be a couple weeks at the most.

(On the significance of the group since day one) It does help to know we can handle the lime light. They have been through it and it is a good thing. There is a process involved and we have been teaching these guys the whole time about handling situations like this and being prepared for it to happen so when it did we can move ahead and take advantage of it. It’s not a new conversation or language with these guys and as long as we do the work then we will progress and take advantage of this opportunity.

(On if it is like last year with mentioning the end result) We never have to talk about that, and that’s what we are competing for every day out here. That’s what we did all the way through year one, two three and four and we are going to keep doing it. It gets the foundation of that discipline that it takes to be that focused and to continue to get stronger. I’m hoping that we should be better and stronger than we were a year ago and we are going to try and build on that.

(On James Carpenter being in better shape for training camp) He’s having a great season. He is in his low twenties and he is fit, strong and ready. His confidence level is higher than it’s been, I’m really fired up to see him come back again in great shape. A bunch of our big guys really worked hard so that their weight is down and right so that they are ready to go for this.

Leave a comment Comments → 27
  1. SandpointHawk says:

    Thanks for the transcript…It always helps me to decode the Pete-Speak…

  2. Dukeshire says:

    A lot of laudatory comments regarding Michael. I hope it’s all true and not veiled shots to Lynch. That’s not Carroll’s style, so I doubt it.

    I too hope that he’s right about Carp. Fit and confident; that would be awesome. It’s time for so e stability up front.

  3. seahawk44 says:

    I think Lockette is going to make this team. He was playing lights out special teams last year, and made a few nice catches. I know us fans have been waiting for the Rocket to live up to his potential for what seems like a long time and several moves to the enemy.

    Even with the Rice retirement and the Tate departure, I am feeling quite confident in this WR group.

    I am so happy that the season is upon us again!

  4. I hope the Hawks do not cave in to Lynch one single bit.

  5. bsinnitt says:

    Lynch has brought all kinds of toughness to our team and for that I’m grateful. Not a bright move to hold out though. He has zero leverage and will end up losing money.

    As a husky fan, it reminds me of 2 years ago. I thought how can they replace the toughness of Chris Polk? Especially with a mediocre O Line. Then some guy named Bishop Sankey set my mind at ease. He didn’t run with the same violence of Polk but he was just as effective.

    Next man up. Go Hawks!

  6. jawpeace says:

    What is really crazy to think of is that Lynch just lost $30,000 today. That is more money than I make in a year.

    I agree it would be nice if Lockette has really turned the corner. I have grew tired of waiting for him to develop and this year find myself hoping some new young guy shocks everyone for that final spot the way Baldwin did a few years back.

  7. It still seems to me that Marshawn is playing a smart card. If he can get some of the money that is scheduled for next year, which would probably get him cut to save cap space, put into this years pay, then he would be more likely retained next season to pursue a third ring. The team would not need to up the actual salary, just reframe it. With the space they still have they would still have room to sign an offensive line vet if one comes available.

    The team could even offer another year of large money, maybe for 2017, which they would not guarantee and would probably never have to pay. Thus, Marshawn gets the “respect” of a larger agreement, and the team does not make an actual risk.

    Because the money would be moved to this year, the space for next year would still be there for our QB and whoever else needs signing, and everyone can be happy. We can be happy, can’t we?

  8. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I totally agree Oldslow.

    It’s one thing to honor a contract & I agree that both sides should do that.

    It’s another thing to honor your contract in good faith & the FO hasn’t done that so why should Lynch.

    This can & I believe will be worked out.

  9. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I agree with Moon when he said Wilson was ready & proved he could carry this team since the latter part of his rookie year.

    In fact I think he would have shown it earlier in his rookie year if they hadn’t held him back.

    For folks to even question if Wilson is ready now to increase his part with regards to producing more for this team haven’t been paying much attention the last couple years.

    And it’s laughable to me.

  10. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I like what I’m hearing about our WRs.
    And I like what I’m hearing from Harvin about the Seahawks.

    Just a healthy Harvin will be a major improvement to the Offense this season.
    And that’s just the beginning of what Wilson gets to work with this year.

  11. chuck_easton says:


    Explain exactly how the FO hasn’t honoured their part of the Lynch contract? What exactly have they done to be in breach?

    You make a bold accusation, back it up.

  12. Re: Lynch, It seems to me the real issue here is complacency. While Marshawn probably will never be complacent in his running style ala the last years of Shaun Alexander, it does appear he is being complacent in the sense of “demanding his due” (i.e. getting paid for what he has done) in contrast to young and hungry guys who want to prove themselves. Pete’s track record on complacency is very clear. If you are complacent, then see ya, cuz we have hungry young guys we’d rather use. “Mr. entitled” TJ Housh, Deon Branch (also “entitled” attitude IMO) and Lendale White are prime examples.

    I remember Pete saying in response to the Q’s about “how do your keep your players from becoming complacent after the super bowl”, Pete is on record as saying “they better not be, or we’ll kick their butts!…There are guys coming up behind them who want to play…”

    IMO Marshawn has contributed more to the teams success than his salary expresses no doubt. However the reality is that there is a salary cap for the entire team, and the RB market is not the same as say top-flight wide receivers. Kudos to Pete and John sticking to their plan.

    I hope Marshawn can come around but judging by his personality I think he would prefer to retire. Retiring means losing a good chunk of his signing bonus ($3 mil?) plus his future salary. So then it will be a choice between giving up $17mil (2 years plus 1/2 singing bonus, I may be wrong on these numbers) or retiring which means he will come back IMO. My concern is that he would be a negative lockeroom guy after coming back because he may feel “slighted”. It will be interesting to see what happens but if they see complacency, I think Pete/JS will eliminate it one way or another.

  13. montanamike2 says:

    I think it might be ok to give Lynch a token of next years money assuming he tears up his contract and we don’t take a salary cap hit next year when he’s released. I do worry that as more players get paid he’ll pull the same crap next year though, it would be OK if we restructured and cut him, but if we happen to need him one more year will he pull the same thing again? I’m against restructuring if it costs us KJ, Bobby or perhaps even Maxwell though.

  14. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Very simple chuck.

    Don’t throw a carrot into a contract, (bonus for x amount of dollars if the player makes x amount of yards) & then pull that carrot away to make it impossible for that player to achieve by saying the rock will be shared more this season.

    That may be technically honoring the contract however it isn’t honoring a contract in good faith imo.

    I agree with every thing you say & others say about Lynch honoring his side of the contract if it wasn’t for this.

    I believe it can be redone to include the bonus, make Lynch happy & save face for the FO to go forward with their plan to spread the rock around more.

    I don’t think Lynch is asking for AP money here.

  15. Southendzone says:

    Marshawn doesn’t have a yardage incentive bonus for 2014.

  16. AZBubba71 says:

    Will miss Marshawn if he retires, but the Seahawks cannot afford to appease him. Of course, Wilson’s contract is coming up next year…but giving in to Lynch this year would also encourage Sherman, Thomas, and Chancellor to renegotiate their deals with two years left on their contracts. It’s just not a successful way to run an NFL team long term.

    In addition, the Seahawks have competent replacements in Michael and Turbin.

  17. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I don’t know how reliable or accurate overthecap is here because they say that if Lynch gains 1500 yards in 2015 or 2016 he gets a $500.000 Bonus.

    That makes no sense to me if Lynch’s contract ends after the 2015 season.

    Where do they get 2016 from?

    Unless I can actually see a copy of his contract I am going to bow out of this argument for now.

    Lol, Damn internet misinformation highway.

  18. seatowntp says:

    Statements regarding Lynch PC made yesterday:
    “. . . we made a big statement by making big effort for him and we wish he was with us. . .”
    (Sounds as though PC is saying, “we came up BIG for you and this is how you repay us?”)

    “. . . when we were trying to make our mark as a physical football team he stood right at the front of that – but I think we’ve accomplished that now. That’s our mentality and our make-up and we’re grateful that he was a part of that.”
    (Sounds as though he is saying Lynch served his purpose and we are ready to move on from him if necessary.)

    “I’m hoping that he’ll be back with us.”
    (That doesn’t instill the greatest of confidence.)

    Maybe I am reading into the statements, but it sounds as though the Seahawks are comfortable with pursuing other options if Lynch persists in his hold out.

  19. shoehawks says:

    What about a trade? I’m sure the Raiders could use a reliable back instead of the two broken down ones they have. Wouldn’t getting something for Marshawn be better than just letting him retire?

  20. Ray_Maines says:

    I love the drama of it all. Position battles, holdouts, parsing the coachspeak, everything. Go ‘Hakws!

  21. I agree with Seatowntp: that’s what it sounds like. I don’t like to lose Marshawn, but I also don’t like the hold out game, and it’s important for the team to set the tone for the future. Are there some players that are just SO big and important that you have to cave to their demands? If so, then you affect the morale of everyone else. I sympathize with Marshawn, especially in light of the big bucks Percy Harvin got for his minimal playing time last year. I do see the Hawks attempting to trade him if the holdout continues, which would be sad. But please, not to any team we face.

  22. The point, should be, how important is it to have players that embody the style of play, attitude and ability you feel is the defining characteristic of your team? Are you the type of team that repeatedly rewards this effort, personal sacrifice and dedication, or do you cast them off and diminish them once you feel like you can move on without them when they become expensive? Which message do you want to send to the rest of the team, that all players are expendable when they are no longer the pliant puppies we desire, or that if players work their butts off for us and become the defining image of our team through their attributes self-sacrifice and efforts we will keep paying and rewarding them regardless of what the pieces of paper we don’t respect when we cut players require?

    Pay the man, it’s all about that respect Boss!

  23. AZBubba71 says:

    Lynch was the first Seahawk that signed a big contract under Carroll/Schnieder…trading for him and then signing him to a large contract was a sign of faith and confidence in Lynch (especially in light of his behavior problems in Buffalo).

    Lynch should fulfill his contract and perform as a recognition of that faith…or he could just continue to lose money to the Seahawks and eventual carries to Michael/Turbin.

  24. AZBubba71 says:

    Trakar–Long term, I want the former message to be sent and not the latter. It is the only way to remain an organization that is capable of winning the Super Bowl every season under the current salary cap.

  25. Regarding the NFL contracts, the way I see it is that the players, teams, and agents understand how the contracts work. It’s not about the contract $$$ and more about bonuses and guarantees.

    In that sense both parties take a risk. The team risks a player not fulfilling the guarantee (such as Harvin getting hurt or someone not meeting expectations). The team still has to pay. You don’t see non productive players standing in line to give money back.

    The player risks that they get cut prior to the contract’s close date. That’s why they negotiate guarantees and bonus money. Everyone knows how the system works. It’s not a surprise.

    Seems to me, if they want an ironclad contract, they’d take less and stipulate that they can’t be cut. But they all want the “respect” and look for outlandish contracts that they know won’t be honored.

    If I were a player I’d look at hiring a sports attorney for a fee rather than an agent at %. I’d also sign more realistic contracts. What’s the point of signing a $50 million deal when everyone knows you’re not getting $50 million?

    In Lynch’s case, play out this year and get your millions. Convince the team to cut you early and get signed by another team for more if you’re worth more. It’s a win-win.

  26. @Trakar: You said “how important is it to have players that embody the style of play, attitude and ability you feel is the defining characteristic of your team?”

    Good question. I think Lynch did a great job of that early to help us get the swagger. But, he’s now not really defining what the team wants. So he’s less team and more Lynch (which is his right).

    The consistently good teams build a system for the long term. Remember when the Pats cut Law and Milloy? A lot of fans weren’t too crazy about it. But you have to do those things to keep momentum and build a strong system that can develop a strong team.

    With that said, I have no problems with Lynch or any other player holding out because it’s their right and teams will cut you when it suits their needs. The problem is that you need leverage to do so and I think he doesn’t have much.

We welcome comments. Please keep them civil, short and to the point. ALL CAPS, spam, obscene, profane, abusive and off topic comments will be deleted. Repeat offenders will be blocked. Thanks for taking part and abiding by these simple rules.

JavaScript is required to post comments.

Follow the comments on this post with RSS 2.0