Pete Carroll Preview: Seahawks injury update, matchup with Vikings
Things didn’t go the Seahawks’ way in a tough Week 2 loss to the Tennessee Titans, but Seattle is hitting the road to take on a familiar foe in the Minnesota Vikings, who have yet to win a game this season.
As he does every week, Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll joined Voice of the Seahawks Steve Raible for The Pete Carroll Preview, which airs every Friday at 8:15 a.m. on KIRO 97.3 FM’s Seattle’s Morning News.
Carroll and Raible discussed the matchup in Minnesota, injuries, a young player who should be playing more going forward and much more. Here’s a bit of what the head coach had to say Friday morning.
Success coming off a loss
Raible read Carroll a stat, showing that the Seahawks under Carroll and star quarterback Russell Wilson (since 2012) have won 80% of their games after regular season loss, which is the best in league history since the NFL-AFL merger in 1966.
Carroll broke down what goes into the Seahawks being successful coming off losses, be it close heartbreakers like Week 2 or blowouts.
“I really think that there’s a tactic to that, and that’s approaching every game like it’s the biggest game that you’ve got,” he said. “It’s also approaching the result of whatever happened in that game in the same fashion. The most important thing is to let it go and to get onto the next thing. That’s where the discipline it takes to find the consistency to return to balance after the event that just took place – whether it’s a great win or an enormous loss or whatever – it’s all the same in that it factors in to your focus and can effect your play.”
Carroll said the Seahawks work hard to be “uncommonly consistent” about how they follow up on games and prepare for the next week.
“We don’t have rivals, we don’t have games that are bigger than others,” he said. “When it’s Monday night or Thursday night or Sunday night or whenever, or whatever it is, it doesn’t matter to us and we’ve worked really hard to be disciplined about that so we can perform like we’re capable regardless of what circumstances are and the outcome that just happened or the future that may be.”
That’s all to be ready for playing in the final game of the year.
“And in that, we’re trying to get ready for the biggest game of the year in the Super Bowl,” Carroll said. “You get there and it’s the biggest event in the world and you want to function like you’re capable, so we’re functioning like that eventuality throughout, and it takes time to get disciplined to do that well.”
Overall, Seattle remains pretty healthy as we approach Week 3, but at least one notable player will be out against the Vikings.
“Dee Eskridge is not going to make it,” Carroll told Raible. “He’s not going to be ready. We’re going to take some more time on him.”
Eskridge suffered a concussion in Week 1 and missed Week 2.
Two key members of the trenches will be gametime decisions in starting right tackle Brandon Shell and defensive tackle Bryan Mone.
“B-Shell, we’re going to take him right up to (gametime) to see how he responds by the end of the week, same with Mone,” Carroll said.
Raible said that he really likes how Mone plays as a run-stuffing tackle and that it appeared that the Seahawks missed him during their Week 2 loss to the Titans. Carroll agreed, and offered some major praise for the third-year defensive tackle.
“There’s no doubt. He’s really played, ever since he’s been with us, he’s played really hard and tough and all that,” Carroll said. “He’s the best he’s ever been right now and we missed him last week.”
More opportunities coming for Alton Robinson
As a rookie in 2020, defensive end Alton Robinson was a healthy scratch before making his NFL debut in Week 3, where he recorded a key sacks to help seal a victory over the Dallas Cowboys.
Robinson barely played in Week 1 this year, but he made a big impact in limited action in Week 2, sacking Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill and forcing a fumble, which Seattle recovered and punched in for a touchdown soon after.
Carroll told reporters earlier this week that Robinson needs to play more, and he doubled down on that sentiment during his conversation with Raible.
“His numbers are showing it. His intensity, his playmaking. He really hasn’t shown us anything but good stuff since he got here,” Carroll said. “Now he’s really schooled in what we’re doing. He just needs to play more.”
Carroll noted that the Seahawks have a deep and potent defensive line rotation and they want to get as many guys in as possible, but “guys compete their way out of that, too” into more playing time by producing.
“And that’s what we’re seeing,” Carroll said of Robinson. “I’m really excited for Alton’s contribution this time and the next couple weeks to show (what he can do).”
Matchup with the Vikings
The Vikings enter Week 3 at 0-2, but they’re seen as probably the best winless team in the NFL right now.
A lot of that has to do with their offense, which has one of the best wide receiver duos in Adam Thielen and Justin Jefferson, a top running back in Dalvin Cook and a consistently solid quarterback in Kirk Cousins.
“They really have all of the elements. They’re really well equipped offensively,’ Carroll said. “The receivers are really good, the quarterback is playing great, the tailback is really a multi-faceted guy (who contributes in both) the running game and (passing) game … They have a really nice scheme, too. We have a lot of respect for them and the choices that they make in their gameplan that we’ve seen over the years.”
The Seahawks and Vikings have faced each other many times with Carroll in charge in Seattle. Since 2012, Wilson and Cousins’ rookie seasons, the Seahawks are 7-0 against the Vikings. Carroll has a lot of respect for how that team operates, though.
“Mike Zimmer is a fantastic defensive coach and has always proven that,” he said. “They’re a really good third down team on defense again. They’re just a really well-coached and well-balanced football team that just hasn’t gotten their win yet, but we don’t want that to happen yet.”
Listen to the full discussion at this link or in the player below.