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Pete Carroll on 6 sacks of Russell Wilson: ‘He can play way better, but we need to help him’

Russell Wilson and the Seahawks' offense came up short in the fourth quarter. (AP)

Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll joined Brock Huard and Mike Salk on 710 ESPN Seattle Monday morning to dissect Seattle’s 27-24 loss to the Denver Broncos in Week 1.

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Among the biggest topics of discussion was the performance from quarterback Russell Wilson and the rest of the Seahawks offense. Wilson completed 19 of 33 passes for 298 yards, three touchdowns, and two interceptions. However, he was also sacked six times and Seattle converted just 17 percent of its third down attempts (2 of 12).

“(Wilson) got rushed, you know, he got hammered,” Carroll told Huard and Salk. “We got sacked six times in the game, and it’s going to be hard for him. He was in the midst of some of those – he bailed a couple times and got in trouble. But we didn’t protect him as well as we need to throughout…

“Look at the first play of the game: they play man-to-man and they add the pressure to the blockers that we had and they get good pressure on us. The very next play, four-man protection (and) he’s holding the ball for six seconds back there. The inconsistency made it hard on him. And then he just needed to bail us out a couple more times. Sometimes he does, (but) in this game in particular they did a really good job on us.”

Carroll said some of the blame lies with Wilson. Asked by Salk whether Wilson held onto the ball too long or missed open receivers, Carroll said there were certainly chances.

“I’m not trying to cover for him at all. I think it was a hard game. Right off the bat we got hammered. And he got hit a couple times in this game (and) it makes a difference. Every quarterback that’s ever played feels that stuff and so you have to get around it. I thought he bounced back when he could. We didn’t quite get it done. What really shows up is the third down numbers. There were too many third and longs, from third and nine up there was six or seven of them or whatever it is, and that’s enough to wreck your day…

“He can play way better. He could have gotten us out of some issues early by getting rid of the football a couple times. But things got taken away and so he got resourceful like he’s going to do. He knows. And we talked about it last night. Sometimes when he takes off great stuff happens, and sometimes you run into trouble. And it happened a couple times. They were a very athletic rush and they did a really nice job and they were able to get him down. A couple times he almost got away when he’s rolling out and a (defender) trips him, that’s the difference between a big play or not, possibly.

“The way that we counter that is we run the ball better. And we didn’t run the ball well enough to offset their rush. And so all of that fits together. It always goes back to the QB, everybody’s going to focus on that. Russ needed to do better than he did yesterday. But we need to help him, a lot.”

Brock and Salk podcast