Carroll: room for improvement with Seahawks defense
By Brady Henderson
Another stellar effort from the Seahawks defense was followed by another less-than-satisfied assessment from their head coach.
After allowing seven points in Week 1, the Seahawks yielded just a field goal during their 29-3 win over San Francisco Sunday night in what might have been their most complete defensive performance under Pete Carroll when taking into account the caliber of the opponent. The coach, however, noted that there’s still room for improvement for a defense that has allowed just 10 points through two games.
“We didn’t play perfect,” Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said of Seattle’s defense, which allowed three points and 207 yards of offense to San Francisco Sunday night. (AP)
“We didn’t play perfect. You may think it looks different than the way we’re seeing it, but we did it well enough and aggressively enough and we were able to adjust as they changed some things that you couldn’t prepare for because we had great understanding of it,” Carroll told “Brock and Danny” on 710 ESPN Seattle Monday. “So it’s a great job of teaching and a great job of executing, but there’s a lot of areas in there that could be better.”
Seattle held San Francisco to 207 yards of offense a week after the 49ers racked up 494 yards and 34 points in their win over Green Bay. And the Seahawks did it with key defenders Brandon Browner, Chris Clemons and Bruce Irvin watching from the sideline.
“I just think we took the next step. We didn’t do anything special; we just played the way we wanted to play but we had banked on all of the preparation time and the guys did a great job,” Carroll said. “We’re getting better. We have a long ways to go here, too, and we’re going to get some players who are gonna help us, too, in the next few weeks that’s gonna make a difference. But I think all in all we’re just moving along.”
Big hit on Wilson. Russell Wilson has mostly stayed out of harm’s way while running read-option plays that can expose quarterbacks to big hits, but he couldn’t avoid some of them Sunday night.
One hit in particular stood out to Carroll. It came in the second quarter when Wilson was hammered by linebacker Ahmad Brooks right after he handed off to Marshawn Lynch on a read-option play. Wilson is considered a running back on such plays and therefore is allowed to be hit, but it was the way Brooks led with his helmet that Carroll took issue with.
“If Kam Chancellor would have hit Vernon Davis with that same hit, he would have got not just a penalty, he would have got fined,” Carroll said.
Sherman vs. Boldin. At 6 foot 1 and 220 pounds, 49ers receiver Anquan Boldin has a size advantage over most cornerbacks he lines up against. That’s not the case when he faces the Seahawks and their oversized duo of Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner, which explains why Carroll had the reaction he did when an offseason trade brought Boldin back to the NFC West.
“When they first got Anquan Boldin, I thought, ‘Oh, great, for us,’ because that’s a good matchup for us because he’s a big dude, our guys are big and they’d be able to stand up with it,” Carroll said. “And fortunately, it worked out last night really well for us.”
Boldin caught 13 passes for 208 yards and a touchdown in the season opener. Covered for most of the night by Sherman, Boldin finished Sunday’s game with a lone seven-yard catch that came midway through the fourth quarter.
Okung’s injury. Carroll said he isn’t sure about the nature or severity of the toe injury that forced left tackle Russell Okung to leave the game for good in the first half, though he mentioned that it could be turf toe.
Follow Brady Henderson on Twitter @BradyHenderson.