How Brian Schottenheimer and Pete Carroll got on the same page about the Seahawks’ offense

Jan 2, 2019, 1:36 PM
Pete Carroll defended his offensive coordinator after the Seahawks' loss to the Cowboys. (AP)...
Pete Carroll defended his offensive coordinator after the Seahawks' loss to the Cowboys. (AP)

The Seahawks’ offense under first-year coordinator Brian Schottenheimer got off to a rough start.

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Seattle began the year 0-2 with losses at Denver and Chicago, and the Seahawks that were supposed to be returning to a run-first mentality in 2018 had just 138 rushing yards through those two games for an average of 69 yards on the ground.

Well, the Seahawks finished the season leading the league with 2,560 rushing yards (160 average) and are in the playoffs, so something had to change after those first two losses. Schottenheimer joined 710 ESPN Seattle’s John Clayton in an interview that aired Wednesday, and he shed light on exactly how the offense evolved after the poor start.

“We came in with the idea we wanted to be really physical and run the football and that was kind of the plan … (and) if I’m being honest I got pretty enamored with Russell (Wilson),” Schottenheimer said. “He’s a pretty dynamic player and so we got away from the running game a little bit those first two games.”

Once back at team headquarters following a 24-17 defeat against the Bears on a Monday night, Schottenheimer said he and head coach Pete Carroll had a productive meeting that helped them get the Seahawks’ offense on the right track.

“When we got back home from Chicago … Pete and I just kinda sat down and we had a great visit. We just talked for about an hour about a lot of different things. It was really cool as I look back on it, two guys trying to get on the same page. And it wasn’t just about the running game or anything. It was about different things – gameday experience and stuff like that.”

It served as an opportunity for Schottenheimer and Carroll to become more familiar with each other, too.

“Pete and I knew each other, but we really didn’t know each other, and it’s a relationship like a marriage,” Schottenheimer said. “I remember him having some thoughts and I had some thoughts and it was an awesome meeting. We came out of there kind of connected – ‘Yes, this is exactly what we want to be.’ And that’s when you kinda saw us, we got (D.J.) Fluker back … we started to get George Fant involved a little bit, knowing that our mentality was going to be one that wanted to physically win the line of scrimmage in everything that we did.

“I give Pete a lot of credit just because it was such an open and honest communication window that we had for that meeting and it’s paid big dividends.”

You can hear the full conversation between Schottenheimer and Clayton embedded in this post or download a podcast of it at this link.

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