Why is Seattle Seahawks’ head coach job so appealing?

Jan 23, 2024, 2:25 PM

Seattle Seahawks John Schneider Pete Carroll...

John Schneider and Pete Carroll watch Seahawks practice on June 8, 2022. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

For the first time since 2010, the Seattle Seahawks are in the market for a new head coach.

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Pete Carroll has been let go, meaning general manager John Schneider is now running the team’s football operations and looking for Carroll’s replacement.

Seattle is one of five teams remaining that are looking for a head coach, so just how appealing of a job is it? Very, according to Robert Mays of The Athletic, who joined Seattle Sports’ Bump and Stacy on Tuesday.

“I think it’s encouraging because they’ve done a really good job of showing stability over the years. They’ve been consistently competitive,” Mays said. “I think there are some people who might come into the building with a dynamic map that John Schneider kind of has control over the roster and say, ‘Eh, this is something where now I’m reporting to the general manager, that power hierarchy maybe isn’t necessarily in my favor.’ But I think that you would vote for the stability over maybe not having a direct line to the owner like he might in some other situations.”

The roster is also in a solid place, Mays said.

“I think there’s a selling point about the talent on the roster,” Mays said. “I know it was kind of a disappointing year when you compare it to the preseason expectations, but there’s still a lot of pieces on this team, there’s a lot of young pieces on this team. So I think the underlying talent and the organizational stability would be the two things that would be the most appealing to me.”

“I think this is a very good job,” Mays later said. “And when you compare it to a lot of other jobs that traditionally come open, I think that there’s a lot to like about it just because this isn’t a team that fired its head coach because it was a disaster. It’s a team that fired its head coach because it’s 15 years, the same voice and the same messaging and sometimes you just need to change, and I think that’s a good spot to land if you’re a coach looking for the sort of opportunity that doesn’t always come along.”

What about the defense?

The Seahawks have had their share of struggles on defense, but it hasn’t been for lack of trying.

Seattle has brought in plenty of big-name players like Jamal Adams, drafted defenders early like Devon Witherspoon and reunited with former Seahawks stars such as Bobby Wagner and Jarran Reed, but it hasn’t turned the defense into a success.

What must change for the defense starting next year, regardless of if the team’s next head coach has an offensive or defensive background?

“I think it’s just a clearer vision. And I think it’s somebody who understands the weaknesses and kind of the blind spots in that vision,” Mays said. “What they tried to do over the last couple of years, I totally understand the plan.”

In addition to bringing in big names on the roster, the Seahawks also signed notable assistants like Sean Desai and Karl Scott to bring new ideas to the defense. Mays said that was done to also try and “evolve in real time to align with some of the more modern thinking that’s going on around the league.”

“But by bringing in these people to kind of moonlight and having this operation by committee where you still have Pete, who’s maybe not as comfortable or fluent in these ideas, it all felt like it was kind of thrown together in the sense that you didn’t have somebody who was at the top of it being like, ‘This is the vision I have and I understand all of the pluses and minuses of playing this way defensively,'” Mays said.

That leads Mays to think Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald would be a good head coach candidate for the Seahawks.

“That level of defensive talent that they have, to me it’s more a question about it getting unlocked than it is about whether they have enough pieces,” he said. “So that’s why somebody that comes in with a clear point of view on defense I think would be really, really interesting for this team specifically.”

More on Seattle Seahawks coach search

• Seahawks Coach Search: Could Rams DC Raheem Morris be the pick?
• What make Detroit Lions OC Ben Johnson appealing
• Will next Seahawks coach be Texans OC Bobby Slowik? Three things to know
• Seahawks Candidate Deep Dive: Isaiah Stanback on Dan Quinn
• ESPN insider details what Seattle Seahawks have asked coach candidates

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