The #LetRussCook project worked incredibly well for the Seahawks, until it didn’t. And now that the Seahawks have fired offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer — who not long ago was getting fringe media hype for a head-coaching job — coach Pete Carroll is determined to retreat to a run-heavy offense.
Michael-Shawn Dugar of TheAthletic.com takes a closer look at the dynamics of the situation, where Carroll continues to be the unquestioned leader of the team, held accountable only by his children who work on the coaching staff. His son, Brennan, is leaving to become offensive coordinator at Arizona.
“I’m [going to] really miss Brennan not being part of our club because he and Nate have been really big factors because they’ll tell me stuff other guys won’t tell me,” Pete Carroll said recently. “They have always been really instrumental, and moving forward, I’m going to miss something there.”
As noted by Dugar, Carroll and G.M. John Schneider have “tough, necessary conversations.” Carroll also said that former quarterbacks coach Carl “Tater” Smith previously served a role of candor for Carroll.
“I would say I always need more help,” Carroll said, via Sugar. “I need to be coached up just like everybody else. Over the years I have lost a couple guys. Tater would tell me anything. He was awesome. I demanded it of him because he knew the truth and he needed to speak to me. I have lost a few guys like that. It is something I’m looking at.”
Carroll needs to be looking at that, or he could eventually be looking for a new quarterback. Although Russell Wilson‘s numbers slumped as the season unfolded, it had less to do with Wilson and more to do with an offense that failed to stay ahead of defenses, once defenses had sufficient film to crack the code on Schottenheimer’s #LetRussCook attack.
So instead of hiring an offensive wizard who can and will devise strategies for getting the most out of Wilson and DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett and others who fuel the passing game, Carroll will revert to a focal point of running the ball and playing defense while paying Wilson $35 million per year and not letting him fully earn it.
By losing at home in the wild card round this year, the Seahawks have regressed. Wilson has only so many additional opportunities to add to his one-championship legacy. How many more will he devote to a team that can’t quite figure out how to use him?
Seahawks fans won’t want to hear that. They will, sooner or later. And presumably no later than the next round of renegotiations with Wilson, who will want a market-value deal, again, as the three years left on his current contract trickle away. If the Seahawks aren’t maximizing the return on their investment, why would they keep paying him so much money?