Pete Carroll: ‘We make a couple plays and we have five turnovers’
And as good as Seattle’s defense was while keeping Carolina out of the end zone and holding an opponent to single-digit points for the first time this season, it could have been better.
That is, if the Seahawks had capitalized on all of their opportunities for takeaways. They recovered a fumble on a botched handoff and picked off a Cam Newton pass, but as coach Pete Carroll discussed when he joined 710 ESPN Seattle’s “Brock and Salk” on Monday, the Seahawks left a few more on the table.
“We make a couple plays and we have five turnovers yesterday, really,” Carroll said.
It wasn’t just turnovers that the Seahawks missed out on. Let’s review five more plays that could have made a great day for Seattle’s defense even better.
• No. 1: Seattle’s first possession ended with a punt that Carolina’s returner muffed, the ball hitting DeShawn Shead in the hands before it was recovered by the Panthers.
• No. 2: Tharold Simon found himself in perfect position to intercept an overthrown pass from Newton late in the first quarter, but the ball hit him in the chest and fell to the turf for an incompletion.
• No. 3: Malcolm Smith punched the ball out of Ed Dickson’s hands in the second quarter only to have it settle right at the feet of Carolina’s tight end, who fell on it before Richard Sherman could.
• No. 4: K.J. Wright missed an interception of his own in the third quarter when he dove in front of an underthrown pass from Newton and the ball bounced off his hands.
• No. 5: In the fourth quarter, Michael Bennett had Newton dead to rights in the end zone after blowing by Carolina’s left tackle with swim move, but what could have been a safety ended up being an incompletion when Newton broke the tackle and threw the ball away.
“So the opportunities are there, and we’ll capitalize and hopefully we’ll make it a little easier for ourselves to score a bunch of points,” Carroll said. “Unfortunately, we didn’t get it done yesterday.”