Pete Carroll’s Blunt Remark on Seahawks Front Office Raises Eyebrows

Pete Carroll

Getty Former Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll on January 10, 2024.

The Seattle Seahawks announced they were moving on from head coach Pete Carroll on January 10, which caught the NFL world by surprise.

Carroll, during a very teary press conference, told reporters that the decision for him to step down as head coach but remain on as advisor was a “mutual decision.” However, the 72-year-old also said he “fought hard” in meetings with general manager John Schneider, owner Jody Allen, and top brass to remain head coach.

During an appearance on Seattle Sports on Friday, January 12, Carroll was asked about the discrepancy. How could the break-up be mutual if you wanted to keep coaching? “The perception of the media, the outside, is not always accurate,” Carroll said.

While Carroll didn’t get into specifics, he suggested the Seahawks front office struggles to be on the same page as him because they’re “not football people.”

“What is the essence of the adjustments necessary? That is where we maybe don’t see eye to eye,” he said. “I see it one way and I think I got a way to fix it. I’m not going halfway to fix it. I’m trying to fix it so it’s perfect.”

While Carroll offered “precise, specific thoughts” on how to fix things, “They may not see that that’s the right answer. Or the answer that makes them feel good. The difficult part, it’s really hard because they’re not football people. They’re not coaches.

“To get the real details of it is difficult for other people. It’s difficult for me to convey to you guys,” Carroll told the show’s hosts, per The Athletic’s Mike Dugar. “As much, (former quarterback) Brock (Huard) as you have in your background, there’s times when I shrug my shoulders, ‘Okay, that’s as far as we got and I can’t take you any farther in this time frame… and we’re not going to see eye to eye.”

Fans & Analysts Strongly Reacted to Pete Carroll’s ‘Not Football People’ Comment

Carroll’s not-so-slight shade toward the Seahawks’ front office caused a stir on X, formerly known as Twitter. Field Gulls’ John P. Gilbert posted, “An inability to explain complex subjects in a manner non-experts can understand is a leadership issue. And could explain a lot of struggles on defense after coaches like Quinn and Richard – who have found success in new roles – left and possibly took that ability with them.”

With how the Seahawks performed this year, especially the defense, most fans sided with the front office. One man posted, “He’s had multiple years to fix this defense. So maybe his way isn’t working anymore. That’s at least how I would think if am Jody Allen!”

One fan wrote, “Makes me wonder what the disconnect was/what Pete’s solution to the struggles was.” Another person commented, “Impossible to know exactly what he means here, but seems like Carroll thinks this team is close to returning to being competitors with some ‘adjustments’ and ownership disagreed.”

The former coach slighting the show’s host had fans rolling. One fan wrote, “Omg he’s telling y’all you don’t know ball to your faces 😭😭😭😭😭😭😭.”

Pete Carroll Exits as the Winningest Coach in Seahawks History

While we may never find out exactly what led to the Seahawks essentially firing Carroll as head coach, he left quite a legacy. Under his tenure as head coach, Seattle made back-to-back Super Bowl appearances in 2013 and 2014, winning the former. Carroll led the Seahawks to a 137-89-1 record over 14 seasons.

NFL analyst Michael Lombardi said on the “The Pat McAfee Show” on Friday, “[Carroll] is going to go in the Hall of Fame as a Hall of Fame Coach. There’s no question.”

Lombardi suggests the decision was not easy, but the defensive performance over the past few years was a killer. “I think what hurt Pete more than anything as was the inability to fix the defense… I’m sure Jody Allen was probably wondering where’s the defensive magic? … He couldn’t solve that problem and… I think that forced their hand… After 14 years, time ran out.”

Seattle finished the 2023 NFL season ranked 30th in total defense, per FOX Sports. While they were 20th against the pass, the Seahawks’ defense ranked 31st against the rush.