BY Art Thiel 12:00AM 01/10/2021

Thiel: Coach, QB not on same page; book closes

A dreary end to a good season illuminated a rift between Russell Wilson and Pete Carroll about how the Seahawks’ offense should work. They now have time to talk.

QB Russell Wilson was sacked five times and hit 10 times by the Rams. / Drew McKenzie, Sportspress Northwest

After the first home playoff loss in Pete Carroll era, after the worst postseason performance of Russell Wilson’s career, it was plain Saturday at the Loo that something was broken with the Seattle Seahawks.

Granted, the ferocious defense of the Los Angeles Rams did a lot of the breaking. But some things in the Rams’ way-too-easy, 30-20 playoff victory (box) came pre-broke, destined to help end the season in what many, including bookies, felt was premature fashion for a 12-4 Seattle team that won the toughest division in football.

Post-game, answers illuminated part of the crevasse.

“Some things I don’t want to speak to,” Carroll said mysteriously, answering a question about what he sought in dialing back the offense at mid-season from the earlier pyrotechnics, which also came with turnovers. “We wanted to continue to (use play-action) and find our chunk opportunities. That doesn’t mean we throw the ball over their heads all of the time, going for just bombs. But there’s a lot of space we create in the play-passing game. It seemed like after the half-way point, we had hit so much early that (defenses) found a way to stay back and just try to bleed us, make us have to throw the ball underneath.

“We were maybe really going for it more than we needed to, and didn’t take advantage of switching gears a bit there, as effectively as we would like.”

For his part, Wilson thought his favored up-tempo style was lost.

“I think that teams know we throw it down the field well, but I think teams also fear our pace and our tempo,” Wilson said. “When the game is on the line, there’s 2:00 left in the game, teams obviously fear that because of the feeling of me going. That’s something along the way, you can kind of lose track of a little bit. I think we kind of lost track of that, maybe. I think that could have helped.”

So what we have here, in an observation from Cool Hand Luke, is a failure to communicate.

That means something between Cold Hand Russ and the warden is broken.

Where offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer fits isn’t clear, but I’m betting the seat is uncomfortable.

The upshot was the Seahawks, in a game where they bounced in the first quarter rookie starting QB John Walford (he’s OK), were beaten by a mediocre veteran quarterback who broke his thumb two weeks ago and wasn’t expected to play.

Despite the rare fortune of having nearly all principal characters healthy, the Seahawks offense had six three-and-out possessions, and only one possession had more than six plays. They didn’t convert a third down until halfway through the third quarter. Wilson was sacked five times, hit 10 times and completed 11 of 27 passes for 174 yards, and made a turnover of the worst kind — a pick-six in the second quarter that was never overcome.

If the final garbage-time TD drive were excluded (the Rams were lighting up cigars following a 30-13 lead), it would have been the fewest playoff points since a 10-9 win in  sub-zero Minneapolis in 2016.

And it was rainless and windless in Seattle in January.

So, no disrespect to the Rams, there were really no excuses for the Seahawks to lose so fecklessly. But there was a reason: Dysfunction.

Or as Carroll put it in his opening remark, “I told these guys I have no place in my brain for this outcome.”

Carroll and Wilson did a polite post-game dance, but they weren’t in the same ballroom. They didn’t want to call out each other directly, but Wilson showed up almost 45 minutes after Jamal Adams’ Zoom session, unshowered and in baggy sweats. While a rare fashion faux pas is hardly a football metric, it was emblematic of the dishevelment for one who manicures carefully his public persona.

He looked and sounded stricken.

“The first quarter was gone basically,” he said of two drives that ever got beyond their own 25. “That’s just the reality. Second and third, we just kind of faltered and didn’t — weren’t on our stuff all the way.

“You guys can write whatever you want but the reality is is that we have a great football team and I think we have great guys. But we didn’t play great today.”

The acme of dysfunction came with 9:32 left and the Rams up 23-13. RB Chris Carson was stoned for no gain at third-and-one at the Seattle 34-yard line. RG Damien Lewis was momentarily hurt, providing the coaches with plenty of time to come up with a fourth-and-1 play that was critical to staying in the game.

Somehow, Seattle was late out of the huddle and didn’t get the play off in time. But it made no difference because LG Jordan Simmons was nailed for a false start. Fourth-and-6. Punt.

Carroll took on the responsibility for the delay, saying he butted into the playcalling.

“Just wasn’t clear enough,” he said. “But it’s just one play.”

So was LA CB Darious Williams’ second-quarter interception of a bubble-screen pass intended for DK Metcalf. But WR Freddie Swain’s inability to block him, not Wilson’s throw, led to a 41-yard return for a TD and a 13-3 lead.

It was easy to see Williams moving on the play almost before Wilson threw.

“It’s familiarity,” said SS John Johnson. “This is the third time we’ve played them this year. I can’t even count how many times I’ve personally played against Russell Wilson and this team. If you keep him in the pocket, try to limit him from extending plays, you’re going to have success.

“We’ve got a secondary that’s been lock-down all year, not giving up too many deep balls. That’s the recipe to beat this team and that’s what we showed today.”

Obviously, we all enjoy familiar recipes, but Wilson and the Seahawks need to revise the menu. This team was built for a Super Bowl run in Wilson’s ninth year, and now is done.

A year ago, the Seahawks won an NFL record-tying 10 games by one score or less, and were lucky to get to 11-5. Late-season injuries diminished expectations. Besides, being eliminated on a frozen night at Lambeau Field by Aaron Rodgers was hardly an embarrassment.

But the healthy Seahawks messed this one up at home, even after the nemesis, DT Aaron Donald, went to the sidelines early in the third quarter with an injury. The Seahawks netted minus-1 yard from the next two possessions.

Turned out the 20-9 win over the Rams Dec. 27 was a mirage. Saturday was the real deal. The Seahawks had five touchdowns in three games against the Rams, partly due to 16 sacks of Wilson.

Good as much of it was, the season broke apart in an especially dreary end. Carroll and Wilson have some fixing to do.

LB Justin Hollins gets himself a couple of armfuls of Russell Wilson. / Drew McKenzie, Sportspress Northwest


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YourThoughts

  • jafabian

    After a fairly successful season in the face of a pandemic the Seahawks ended the season sloppily. Mostly on all fronts but much of it squarely on Wilson’s shoulders. After ending the season passing at a 68% rate he threw for 11-27 with a pick six that was obvious before the ball left his hand. The delay of game on 4th down was on Wilson and even the false start since they were rushing to snap the ball. There was a player injury time out beforehand, more than enough time to draw up a play. You’d think by now he’d learn that Aaron Darnold is on to him but he still hasn’t made adjustments and made the same mistakes. Even after Darnold left the game with injury. The passing game consisted primarily of Metcalf, Lockett and Hollister and Hollister failed to haul in a pass in five targets. Will Dissly was targeted only twice for some reason. The offense didn’t make any adjustments at halftime. It’s like they decided to stick with what got them there whereas the Rams were constantly making adjustments because of injuries and reaped the benefits from that.

    Goff had a good but not great game. Though the defense only gave up 16 points they had no business giving up 130 yards to a rookie RB in the playoffs. It was reported that Adams played with a torn labrum and it showed. The Rams quickly figured that out. Shaq didn’t seem 100% either.

    Reed inexplicable decision to return a kick while surrounded by Rams players was costly since the Rams ended up scoring a TD. It’s decisions like that can cost a job. Why he didn’t take a knee astounds me.

    It didn’t seem to me like the offense or the defense made any sort of adjustments at halftime much less in-game or take advantage of the opportunities given to them. Wilson’s game started strong at the beginning of the season garnering MVP talk then regressed as the season went on. This is the second season in a row this has happened. Maybe third, I can’t recall. Overall a good season but the ending was like the ending of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker where you’re scratching your head and wondering what just happened.

  • ll9956

    It’s hard to know what to say about the Hawks’ facceplant today (technically yesterday). It’s true that this wasn’t Russell’s best game, but poor pass protection–AGAIN–was often the root cause. I won’t name names, but even this amateur observer could watch various O-linemen whiff on blocks. So what does this lead to? Sacks, hurried, inaccurate throws and a QB rating of 17.7, which I assume is the lowest of his career. As to the pick-six, by itself it wasn’t a game-changer, but it reminded me of the play that cannot be mentioned. There are myriad other things that one could throw rocks at, but I just don’t have the stomach to rub salt in the wounds when the team is struggling to get up off the ground emotionally. Next season seems like a thousand years away. This is a definite OY VAY!

  • Kraken

    Good thing John and Pete didn’t trade away all the future draft capital in a lame-brained scheme to win it all this year… Oh wait, you say they did what? Trade “Let Russ Cook” to the Jaguars for the number one pick so we can get a real quarterback like Trevor Lawrence in here, not an overpaid has-been who holds the ball forever.

    • 1coolguy

      Won’t happen, but that would be worth doing! He will be a top QB, a la Allen, in a few years.

      • Husky73

        RW is a top QB now.

        • Kraken

          That’s like saying Trump is the best POTUS now.

          • 1coolguy

            I hope you are honest when Dead Man Walking Biden screws up!

          • Husky73

            It’s impossible to screw up more than Trump. Spiro Agnew, Richard Nixon, James Buchanan, Franklin Pierce, Warren Harding and Andrew Johnson TOGETHER could not screw up more than Trump.

          • 2nd place is 1st loser

            You’re like a scratched record dude.

          • Husky73

            No, it’s not…not even remotely like saying that.

        • 1coolguy

          Of course he is, BUT you would get 10 more years and much more cap space, dumping $35mm for a Joe Burrow deal, who signed a 4 year, $36mm contract with the Cincinnati Bengals, including a $23mm signing bonus, $36mm guaranteed, freeing up $26mm each year for 4 years.

          • Husky73

            He’ll be a top QB for many more years to come.

          • 1coolguy

            Apparently you didn’t comprehend my comment – ESL maybe?

  • gregoryjames

    “While a rare fashion faux pas is hardly a football metric, it was emblematic of the dishevelment for one who manicures carefully his public persona.”
    Art, one of your better quotes in a long career as an illustrious quote maker. After the Seahawks’ season has been dissected down to quark level, could you please focus your sharp wit onto the debacle known as UW men’s BB?

    • Husky73

      That debacle is far easier to define— a roster of bench players at Seattle Pacific.

  • DJ

    Thanks Art. Before reading your column, my observation was that the Seahawks were again out-coached. Russell Wilson is not a pocket QB, and he’s one of the current three best throwers when on the move. His elusiveness from the pocket is old news and the Rams are really good at collapsing it and sealing any leaks for him to slither through. He’d be more effective with a moving pocket on pass plays. Combine that with play action fakes, and the zone read option, and he’d have an advantage, instead of continuing to be at this most obvious disadvantage.

    When ya get out coached, seems to me that you need some time to figure out what went wrong – ‘cause ya didn’t get it all in the first place – you were out coached. Rather than not being on the same page in the game, (which still could be an issue, but should have been more apparent then) I think Coach and Russ hadn’t had the time to digest and collectively come up with a joint explanation of a game plan based on fantasy.

    Let Russ stir, and get DK some big, soft and sticky oven mitts with which to dampen his batting at the ball, and the Seahawks offense will be cookin’

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  • Coop

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucks are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • BB46

    Looked to me that our offense just got man handled. Rams attacked us and we went backwards as much as forwards. All starts with the big guys up front. We had no control at all of the line of scrimmage. Rams knew their pass rush would get home. Their secondary didn’t have to play the deep part of the field because they knew their pass rush wouldn’t give us enough time to go there. The 2 times we went there they were beat. Got 1 TD and missed the other because Russ had to rush his throw. (But DK was very open)
    All that is why the Rams led the NFL in defense this year. They do that to everybody.
    Our “D” played fair. But against a team with that defense we gave up to much.
    Just can’t be off a little in the play offs. We were and now we are done. Still a good year.
    Next year we have to come up with something against those teams that are good enough to attack us like that. Rams weren’t the only ones who did it. 9ers will do the same next year too when they are healthy. Our O line isn’t bad. But against those “Super” athletes they struggle like the rest of them do. O line will need to get younger and more athletic. Easier said than done.

  • DonMac

    As much as Pete’s energy and positive thinking is a source of his success as a head coach, his stubbornness and excessive level of control in all aspects of this team is also his huge weakness. There’s nothing preventing the Seahawks from hiring the best offensive and defensive coordinators in the NFL except for Pete’s ego. Pete doesn’t want to be overshadowed by one of his coordinators so instead he hires guys like Brian Schottenheimer and Ken Norton who have been mediocre at best during their coaching careers, but Pete knows they’re no threat to his control so these are the types Pete wants to surround himself with. Let’s face it, Pete’s control of all player personnel matters effectively neutralizes the most important function that a GM in any sport typically has to him or herself. This is one of those few points in time where an owner should intervene and insist on the obvious need for changes in the assistant coaching ranks as well as to strengthen the GM’s hand in player personnel matters, but I doubt this will happen. I hope I’m wrong, but I just don’t think Jodi Allen is all that interested in the Seahawks and certainly not enough to take on Pete’s overbearing control of the Seahawks.

    • 1coolguy

      Interesting analysis – With Allen’s pocketbook, money is not the issue, so why DOESN’T PC hire the best? His mantra going back to USC is “always compete” meaning anyone can start at any time, the best play. So why doesn’t he apply this to Asst coaches? PC’s Achilles?

      • eyeroq

        The “best assistant coaches” are already going to be coaching on the staffs of other teams and aren’t granted interviews to make lateral moves. Pete can only hire who is available when he’s looking and it’s not like the ranks of the unemployed will typically include the best in the business. Far from it, your typical hiring pool is going to be re-treads and also-rans.

  • Kevin Lynch

    Appreciate your thoughts, Art. I don’t completely agree with the Hawks being “built for a Super Bowl run”. They do not have a Super Bowl-caliber offensive line. They lost both line battles yesterday. It wasn’t just the five sacks, it was the penalties and it was the push allowed. Russell has taken too many hits over the last few years. It seems to have slowed his decision making and movements in the pocket. You just can’t allow ‘the franchise’ to take that many hits. The Hawks d-line should have thrashed Goff, who is even slower to set up, make decisions and release. Didn’t happen. Granted the rookie back for the Rams, Akers, was exceptional. And that held back the Seattle rush. But with Goff injured and Donald out for almost half the game, it’s a bad loss. The second turnover was a killer. The punt should not have been handled in traffic. Rams will lose in Green Bay. Hawks need to get Russ out of the fry pan and let him cook.

    • Howard Hart

      Hawks need to get Russ an offense that compliments him and a defense that approaches that of the Legion of Boom.

      • Husky73

        They have both. They were 12-4.

      • jafabian

        I’ve wondered how Russ would do with a top OC like Josh McDaniels. But they’d probably butt heads because Russ wants to do what Russ wants to do at this stage of his career. Much the way Aaron Rodgers is. I hate to say it but Richard Sherman might be right. Coach Carroll needs to quit protecting Russ and make him accountable.

  • Paul Sherman

    Hey, they’re the #1 defense. They showed it. I loved the comment about the chess match. I have not heard the word “brilliant” used by anyone to describe our OC an DC. When your big guys can’t win the battle on either side of the ball, you’re gonna lose. I believe Russ holds the ball too long because he’s being attacked and can’t find anyone open as he scans the field over man-mountains. Now you’ve got me concerned that Pete is locked up till he’s in his 70’s, too. It’s entertaining football, but it’s sure more fun to win. Watching Brady and the Josh Allen yesterday I was somewhat wistful. They make it look easy.

    • 1coolguy

      “Watching Brady and the Josh Allen yesterday I was somewhat wistful. They make it look easy.”
      You got that right! Shott needs to move on – what an embarrassment

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    • Howard Hart

      Tight man coverage beats Hawk’s receivers. The Hawks had not near enough tight man coverage on opposing offenses.

  • 1coolguy

    I hear they found the Roosevelt HS playbook in Shott’s booth!
    The only enjoyment I got yesterday watching the games was seeing a real QB (Brady) and coach (Arians) masterfully perform. A complete 180 from the sophomoric offense the Hawks displayed, so feckless they left the defense on the field much too long.
    The Hawks game where their “MVP” qb was clearly outplayed by an AAF (American Alliance of Football) QB and his replacement with a broken thumb.
    LA QB’s: 12/25, 169 yards, 86 QBR. RW: 11/27, 174 yards, 17 QBR – Yes, RW ‘s rating was SEVENTEEN!
    BTW, notice NONE of PC’s OC’s have been hired away by other teams, while his DC’s have been. I suggest PC and JS need to really take a hard look at what coaches are available and get him, asap, as this offense has proven itself to not be NFL championship quality.
    Tampa, NO, KC, etc may be phone calls to make Pete!

    • Kevin Lynch

      Good point about Brady. Always clear-headed, sharp and decisive. A very rapid decision maker. I wonder, though, if there could be a route problem with Seattle’s receivers. But the Ram’s cover guys are damn good.

  • Coop

    [apologies. Currently having a tit-for-tat with the Disqus spammer]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucks are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • 2nd place is 1st loser

    That game yesterday just might be the straw that breaks the camels back regarding Schneider packing his bags and exiting stage right. With only four picks in the upcoming draft the cupboard is pretty bare and Johns magic bag of pixie dust has possibly run dry. Yesterday’s game was slowly creeping up on the Hawks, their offensive performance has been subpar for quite a few games this year, especially the last half of the season. Claiming that injuries are the sole reason why they haven’t played well only goes so far. They were as healthy yesterday as they have been all year and yet the Rams just bullied the Hawks around all day. With little to no draft capital in this years draft, it begs the question, what can the organization do to make the changes needed to improve next year and the future. With the distinct possibility of having a GM change, OC & DC change and no draft capital. Might darker days be on the horizon for the Hawks?

    • Husky73

      But, it was just this week that everyone universally agreed that Schneider had the secret sauce of success. What gives?

      • 2nd place is 1st loser

        Everyone? Wasn’t aware that you were speaking for all.

  • Husky73

    I would be pleased to have the phrases “a little bit” and “kind of” eliminated from the lexicon.

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucks are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

    Coop

  • woofer

    PC is a defensive coach. Hawks win the Super Bowl only when the defense is so good that it can compensate for the inevitable level of offensive mediocrity. Russ can be very good, but not good enough to win it all on his own in a humdrum and predictable offensive scheme.

    • Howard Hart

      Exactly!

    • Mister-Blue-Sky

      If I’m reading between the lines – and Metcalf’s lips – correctly, this is the general consensus.

  • Husky73

    Here come the day-after, teetering on the ledge, season-as-a total-failure, the exposed fraud, and end-of-the-world posts that follow an exciting and intriguing 12-5 season while winning the toughest division in the NFL. It’s time to re-tool, fire the OC, wrestle the coach into the stocks in the town square (bring your pitchforks and torches!), allow the GM to move on to greener pastures, and trade the over-rated and over-paid QB, right? And, this gnashing of teeth has come a few days after it was agreed that the Seahawks had the “secret sauce” of enduring success. The horror, the horror……..

  • Howard Hart

    Even with a 5-0 start, I was not impressed with the wins that were dependent on moon balls. The Hawks dove from a top 5 offense to 17th whilst the defense improved from 32nd to 22nd. Not having a running game certainly contributed and JMO, that wasn’t on the RBs when so many running plays ended with a TFL. I said several weeks ago that the offense was looking Bevelesque…vanilla and predictable. While the defense did improve, there were still holes in pass coverage that were not covered.

    Generally, two areas need attention. 1. Personnel (not just RBs) that can produce a viable run game and pass protection 2. Personnel that can handle tight man coverage on defense.

    Also, “Somehow, Seattle was late out of the huddle and didn’t get the play off in time.”
    How many time-outs have been burned through a season because of this? This has happened a few too many times over the course of the last few years. Get the play called, get on the ball, execute the play! Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady et al. apparently can get away with losing time-outs. The Hawks, not so much.

    • Husky73

      Way, way too many sacks that kill drives. Get the ball out faster.

  • Will Ganschow

    Such a pathetic effort. Not close enough to think I know, but I would welcome your thought on where you think Wilson is at in his career. Is is decreasing mobility compromising other assets? Does he have to many distractions. Is his incessant positivity deflecting true critical thinking? i’ve got the questions?

    • Husky73

      Wilson one of the top 5 quarterbacks in the NFL, and will continue to play at a very high level (barring catastrophic injury) for years to come. He is the best QB in the history of the Seahawks and he is the team leader and face of the franchise on and off the field. He is to Seattle what Drew Brees has been for New Orleans and Aaron Rodgers continues to be for Green Bay.

    • Tman

      Was Simmons doing a number on Aaron Donald? 5 sacks and ten hits. Yikes.Failure to use Hyde and Carson as receivers and 2nd line of defense against Donald may have been a factor in creating a dispirited Wilson and furious DK Metcalf.

  • Warchild_70

    I have nothing to say that hasn’t been said. OC should be shot at sunrise! QB needs an O Line blah blah blah. I’ll sit here with my Bourbon and Beer with the peanuts of pathos.

  • Will Ganschow

    Oh yeah. Jamal Adams is a hero. I hope he learns to dial it just enough to save his body.

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game.
    wish my uncle was still alive. He loved the spam game.]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucs are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game.
    wish my uncle was still alive. He loved the spam game.
    my uncle was bit by a moose once.]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucs are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • Ben Haviland

    How do i apply for the offensive play caller position?

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game.
    wish my uncle was still alive. He loved the spam game.
    my uncle was bit by a moose once.
    mind you, moose bites can be very nasty!]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucs are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game.
    wish my uncle was still alive. He loved the spam game.
    my uncle was bit by a moose once.
    mind you, moose bites can be very nasty!
    my auntie tried to dress it with Raggmunk and Lutefisk]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucs are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game.
    wish my uncle was still alive. He loved the spam game.
    my uncle was bit by a moose once.
    mind you, moose bites can be very nasty!
    my auntie tried to dress it with Raggmunk and Lutefisk
    but that only attracted bears, and his sister-in-law Freja]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece of paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucs are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • Talkjoc

    THIEL: SEAHAWKS, THE NFL TEAM THAT FIGURED IT OUT? Oh, what a difference a day makes.

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game.
    wish my uncle was still alive. He loved the spam game.
    my uncle was bit by a moose once.
    mind you, moose bites can be very nasty!
    my auntie tried to dress it with Raggmunk and Lutefisk
    but that only attracted bears, and his sister-in-law Freja
    the whole town loved Freja, or tried to anyway]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece of paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucs are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • Mister Tacoma

    If the Seahawks can’t run the ball this team is mediocre at best. PC’s offenses count on the run in order to work.
    I was hoping Penny could help with that but the O line isn’t getting it done consistenly.

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game.
    wish my uncle was still alive. He loved the spam game.
    my uncle was bit by a moose once.
    mind you, moose bites can be very nasty!
    my auntie tried to dress it with Raggmunk and Lutefisk
    but that only attracted bears, and his sister-in-law Freja
    the whole town loved Freja, or tried to anyway
    rumor has it she walked into the sea one night and never reappeared]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece of paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucs are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.

  • With all due rspect, it’s not Swains fault. It’s DK’s, there was no reason he couldn’t step into the pass like a basketball player would on the same play concept.

  • Tman

    Predictable? Run up the middle on first and second downs. Pass on third down. Punt on 4th down. Did the Rams know this sequence would be the norm through 3 quarters?

    Why would the Hawks do something like this the last 5 games with an unstoppable passing attack? Why go from 30 to 40 points a game to hoping to win with 20 or less?

  • Coop

    [still playing the spam game.
    wish my uncle was still alive. He loved the spam game.
    my uncle was bit by a moose once.
    mind you, moose bites can be very nasty!
    my auntie tried to dress it with Raggmunk and Lutefisk
    but that only attracted bears, and his sister-in-law Freja
    the whole town loved Freja, or tried to anyway
    rumor has it she walked into the sea one night and never re-appeared
    my uncle said she secretly moved to Helsinki. Scandalous!]

    Art,
    I genuinely appreciate your measured critique of our sports teams on this page. Even, objective, diplomatic. Not sure how you do it.
    I’ll go there; I often hate our Seahawks offense. I hate it. Our sub-par line. Our scramble drill passing game. Our predictable play calling. Year after year.
    A lot of social media anger at Schottenheimer today (deserved, I believe) but let me comment on something a little broader. Football is chess. 11 players on both sides, all with varying strengths. It is the coaches job to create a game strategy, find weakness in your opponent, prepare your players, execute the strategy, and adjust as the game progresses. It seems like too often our coaches are playing checkers against an opponent playing chess. It seems like smart coaches have figured us out, and it seems like our coaching staff is REALLY slow in responding and adjusting. Listen to Carroll’s comments after the Buffalo game.
    I know. What about our record setting offense in the first half of the season? Against the Falcons, Patriots, Cowboys, Dolphins, Vikings, Cardinals, and 49ers. Granted, these are professional teams, not particularly good professional teams, but still; all dangerous. None of which had a pre-season and we have a veteran QB. Early covid season advantage: offense.
    So what the hell happened to our high scoring team?
    Back to Schottenheimer (and perhaps Carroll). I could easily see a GM or ownership group having contract negotiations with either of these two in a glass walled conference room and sliding a piece of paper across the table that says:
    “2019 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 13
    2020 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 3 for 9
    2021 playoff loss. Third down conversions – 2 for 14”
    Not even 20%. That’s pathetic. Russell Wilson is our QB and our OC can’t find plays our offense can execute when we REALLY need one?

    I like Pete Carroll, and I get the positives of his “Golly, gee, we’re just out here having fun!” mentality but I seriously wonder how well that transfers to preparing his team to play football. I would be much happier to see a script-flip of the slow game starts and late RW heroics. The slow adjusting to their opponent. The terrible blocking (God, the terrible blocking).
    Backyard Russ is getting too old to be backyard Russ, and defensive coordinators are figuring this out. He continues to be one of the greatest passers this league has ever seen. Truly stunning stuff. But he’s maybe 5’11” and he goes through his receiver progressions longer than any QB I’ve seen, and that’s an issue because he’s not scrambling out of trouble like he used to. 6’4″ 43 year-old Tom Brady yelled at most of his offensive teammates early this season (because he expects perfection) and he and the Bucs are playing in their second playoff game next week. Not too much “Golly gee whiz, we’re having fun!” in Tom Brady. Just a guy who is constantly looking at his Microsoft Surface to figure out how to adjust to beat his opponent.