Seahawks Could Land Ex-Pro Bowl Champ as Next Coach, Says Insider

Pete Carroll

Getty The Seattle Seahawks are looking for a new head coach to replace Pete Carroll.

The Seattle Seahawks are in the market for a new head coach for the first time in more than a decade. There is good news as plenty of veteran coaches are available for hire. NBC Sports’ Peter King believes former Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel should be at the top of the Seahawks’ list.

“Don’t know where he goes, but if I were him, I’d want to partner with Seattle and GM John Schneider,” King wrote in his January 15, 2024 weekly column titled, “FMIA Wild Card: Decibels in Detroit, Doubt in Dallas, Harmony in Houston.” “Excellent organization, smart GM. All Vrabel would have to do is coach a team with pretty good talent, knowing that Schneider has the money and experience to build a Super Bowl team—if they get the quarterback right.”

The Titans surprisingly announced the team was moving on from Vrabel this offseason. The veteran coach is one of the few candidates that has an impressive resume as both a player and coach. Vrabel spent 14 seasons as an NFL linebacker for the Steelers, Patriots and Chiefs.

The former defender is best known for his eight seasons with New England. Vrabel was named to both the Pro Bowl and All-Pro teams in 2007. The ex-linebacker won three Super Bowl titles with the Patriots.

Seahawks Coach Search: Potential Target Mike Vrabel Is a Former Pro Bowler, 3-Time Super Bowl Champ & Coach of the Year

Vrabel is not only an accomplished player but a decorated coach, often leading the Titans to the NFL playoffs. The coach spent six seasons at Tennessee going 54-45 during his tenure, including four straight winning seasons.

The Titans often appeared to overachieve under Vrabel based on the team’s roster compared to other AFC contenders. Yet, things finally caught up to the coach going 7-10 and 6-11 in his final two years with the Titans.

Vrabel was named the 2021 AP Coach of the Year. The former Titans coach went 2-3 in the postseason during his time in Tennessee. Vrabel’s tenure was highlighted by a run to the AFC Championship where the team lost to the Chiefs during the 2019 season.

Seahawks Rumors: Seattle May Want a New Head Coach & Quarterback

Defensive-minded coaches like Vrabel and Dan Quinn continue to be mentioned as possibilities to replace Pete Carroll. It is fair to wonder whether Seattle will move in a completely different direction given the team’s decision to part ways with Carroll. Could Seattle turn to an offensive-focused head coach next?

King believes part of the motivation for the coaching change was not only to start over at head coach but also at quarterback. The NFL insider suggests the Seahawks as a potential landing spot for a quarterback in the 2024 NFL draft. Geno Smith remains under contract for the next two seasons, but Seattle also has an out in his deal this offseason.

“The right coach at the right time for Seattle won 147 games in 14 seasons, won one Super Bowl and had a very ugly Super Bowl loss in his other trip to the big game,” King noted. “But I see why the ‘Hawks did this. Seattle, with the 16th pick in the draft, has to think about starting over with a quarterback in a strong-QB draft in round one, and doing that with a coach who will be 73 next season isn’t a smart way to go.

“Carroll’s tireless and the youngest 72-year-old man, by far, I know. But his locker room has heard the same message for a long time and responded by going 26-26 over the past three years.”