Pete Carroll: ‘There was a couple of big, big cuss words’ during Seahawks punter’s trick play
In their 28-14 in over the Detroit Lions Sunday, the Seahawks all but sealed their victory when rookie punter Michael Dickson took a snap in his own end zone and ran for a first down. But head coach Pete Carroll said he wasn’t the one who called the fake punt – that was all Dickson.
During his weekly interview with Brock Huard and Mike Salk on 710 ESPN Seattle, Carroll explained what was going through his mind when Dickson took off.
Carroll said postgame Sunday that the original call was for Dickson to take an intentional safety, which is why he was surprised to see his punter run for the first down marker.
“There was a couple of big, big cuss words,” Carroll said with a laugh Monday morning on The Pete Carroll Show when asked about his inner-monologue during the play. “And they were comin’ off the headphones, the headphones are poppin’ off our ears. But it was – what a moment. That was a really fun moment. I swear to God, I’m looking right down the sideline, I think Mike was smiling as he’s running, he’s thinking, ‘Oh, (shoot)!”
(Full disclosure: Carroll did not say “shoot.”)
Dickson leaving the end zone was a risky play – if he were to be tackled before reaching the first down marker, the Lions would get the ball in the red zone with more than two minutes remaining. What would Carroll have said had Dickson not made it past the down marker?
“Then I’ve got another word for you,” Carroll answered.
“No, but you know, we have a big thing that you don’t want to make stuff up when you play football,” Carroll continued. “We want to do things that we practice and prepare and all that. And we’re really adamant about that point. Don’t make stuff up on game day, just play like we practiced.”
Technically, Carroll clarified, Dickson was given the green light to carry out a fake. Granted, that was a conversation between the two in a London airport that may or may not have been a joke.
“Pete said earlier – I don’t know if he was joking – after the London game, ‘When are you ever just going to take it and run it?’” Dickson told Jen Mueller in a postgame interview on 710 ESPN Seattle following the Seahawks’ win over the Lions. “I think he was being sarcastic, but I just pulled it off and it worked out.”
Carroll told Huard and Salk that advice wasn’t meant to be employed when Dickson was 109 yards away from the goal line, though.
“And then he just did something phenomenal,” the head coach added. “So what are you gonna do?”