Jody Allen

Seahawks’ Pete Carroll Not Worried About Job Security

While three Head Coaches were sent packing in the NFL yesterday, Pete Carrol of the Seahawks was not one of them. The fact that he is in line to carry on in Seattle comes as no surprise to him, either. According to a report from NFL.com’s Kevin Patra, Carrol is not concerned about his job status. 

When asked about his future with the team, the 70-year-old responded, “I’m in great shape”. The reasons why the Seahawks went a disappointing 7-10 in 2021 will be the main focus of a meeting between Carroll and other staff members and owner Jody Allen in the near future. The outcome of that meeting, according to Pata’s colleague Ian Rapoport, will determine whether or not the team is willing to “give it another go”, or if Allen “will have the first big decision of her ownership to make”.

Carroll is looking forward to getting on the same page with ownership, stating that the meeting will be “really pointed at figuring things out. [Allen’s] very analytical and she wants to make sure that we’re doing everything that we can possibly do to get everything right. She’s a terrifically competitive person in that regard and she doesn’t want any stone unturned… So we’ll try to do a great job of exchanging the information and setting the course for making sure that we give ourselves the best chance to be champions”.

Of course, the biggest storyline for the offseason in Seattle revolves around the future of quarterback Russell Wilson. It was recently reported that the team intends to keep Wilson, despite longstanding speculation that he would either request a trade or a coaching change. Instead, it appears the team will maintain the status quo in 2022, looking to rebound from the worst season in both Carroll’s and Wilson’s tenure in Seattle.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Seahawks Owner Jody Allen Concerned With Team’s Performance

The Seahawks find themselves at 3-8 and at the bottom of the NFC West, and unless they run the table, they will post a losing record for the first time in the Russell Wilson era. As Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network reports, owner Jody Allen does not consider the disappointing 2021 campaign — which saw Wilson miss games for the first time in his career — as a one-year blip (via Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk).

Allen inherited the team from her brother, Paul Allen, who passed away in October 2018. Like Paul, Jody has largely stayed in the background and has allowed head coach Pete Carroll to function as the de facto CEO. Garafolo, though, says that Allen has recently become “very involved” in the operation, which suggests that a major shakeup could be on the way.

Of course, trade rumors swirled around Wilson last offseason, and there has been speculation that the Seahawks could end up dealing their franchise signal-caller in 2022. Doug Kyed of Pro Football Focus hears that if Wilson is still anxious to leave Seattle, he may not need to force his way out, as the club may be open to swinging a trade in the coming months. After all, the team is without a 2022 first-round draft choice as a result of the July 2020 Jamal Adams trade, and trading Wilson would doubtlessly yield a bounty of draft capital.

On the other hand, this year’s class of college QBs is not considered particularly strong, and Wilson’s bottom-line statistics in 2021 are consistent with his career marks. If Allen truly does believe a dramatic change is in order, then a trade might make sense, but it will be very difficult to pull that particular trigger.

The same goes for Carroll. Now 70, Carroll is signed through the 2025 season, and he said last September that he wanted to coach well into his 70s. It’s unclear if he would want to coach through a rebuild, though if the Seahawks end up trading Wilson and can find a way to adequately replace him, there may not be much (if any) rebuild to speak of. And unless Carroll wants to step away, either because of a strained relationship with ownership or some other reason, it is still hard to imagine Allen going in a different direction.

There is obviously a great deal of uncertainty here. The real story is that Allen has apparently deviated in a significant way from her own modus operandi and that of her predecessor. What that ultimately means for the Seahawks remains to be seen, but it is at least possible that significant changes could be on the way for one of the decade’s most consistent outfits.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Seahawks Notes: Wilson, Carroll, Dunlap

One of the reasons for the trade rumors swirling around Seahawks QB Russell Wilson — and perhaps the primary reason — is Wilson’s relationship with head coach Pete Carroll, which appears to be strained. Apparently, his relationship with Carroll’s sons hasn’t been much better.

According to a tweet from The Athletic, Wilson believes Carroll and his sons, Nolan and Brennan, answer to no one (Nolan serves as the team’s WRs coach, and Brennan had been working as the run game coordinator before accepting a position at the University of Arizona). And, as Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk writes, Wilson is 100% correct.

Former owner Paul Allen “stayed deep in the background” when he was alive, and his sister, Jody Allen, has largely done the same since she inherited the team. Some league sources believe the Seahawks are essentially run by the Allens’ parent company, Vulcan Inc., which in turn defers to the head coach as the club’s de facto CEO. So while Jody Allen could intervene in light of the Wilson trade rumblings, her track record suggests that she will not do so, and that Pete Carroll will ultimately be the one to decide whether to deal Wilson.

While Wilson himself has said he does not expect to be dealt, Florio believes the 32-year-old will ultimately request a trade either this year or next. If QB and HC do not mend fences soon, it’s easy to envision such a scenario.

Now for more from the Emerald City:

  • Unlike Florio, Brady Henderson of ESPN.com does not believe Wilson will be traded. One of the reasons for that is the fact that — as our Sam Robinson wrote several days ago in the piece linked above — a trade will leave $39MM in dead money on the Seahawks’ cap. While a post-June 1 trade will allow the team to spread out that hit and actually create $19MM in 2021 space, Seattle is lacking a first-rounder and third-rounder this season, so a Wilson trade might be more beneficial if it happened prior to this year’s draft and not after June 1.
  • Still, Henderson believes the ‘Hawks will make a trade that both sheds some salary — the team has less than $8MM of cap space relative to the $180MM floor — and adds some much-needed draft capital. There is no indication as of yet that Seattle will look to trade players like Carlos Dunlap, Bobby Wagner, or Jamal Adams, but Henderson could see it happening.
  • As of now, though, Henderson predicts that the club will cut Dunlap and look to re-sign him to a less expensive contract — the former Bengal is due to carry a $14.1MM cap hit in 2021 — while restructuring the contract of franchise icon Wagner and extending 2020 trade acquisition Adams.
  • Proven performance escalators for several 2018 draftees have played a role in Seattle’s cap crunch. Since he earned a Pro Bowl nod in his rookie season, punter Michael Dickson has a $3.384MM salary for 2021 — the amount of the second-round RFA tender — while cornerback Tre Flowers is due to earn $2.183MM since he met the snap count requirement for the Level One PPE (Twitter link via Henderson). If you need a refresher, OverTheCap.com offers a comprehensive explanation of PPEs.
  • Presently, the Seahawks’ highest draft choice is their second-rounder (No. 56 overall). Given the state of the club’s offensive line, and Wilson’s recent comments in that regard, most mocks have Seattle selecting an OL with that pick, as Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times observes. Ohio State guard Wyatt Davis and Tennessee guard Trey Smith would be worthy Day 2 selections.

West Rumors: 49ers, Cards, Hawks, Raiders

With Week 17 practices beginning Wednesday, here is the latest from the league’s two West divisions:

  • Teams with coaching vacancies have been heavily connected to offensively oriented candidates. With a supply-and-demand issue potentially arising, certain teams will have to pivot to consolation prizes or defensive coaches. For a team eyeing a possible up-and-comer for the future as an offensive coordinator, Matt Barrows of The Athletic (subscription required) mentions an under-the-radar possibility in 49ers quarterbacks coach Rich Scangarello. Kyle Shanahan‘s QBs coach in his two 49ers seasons, Scangarello was a quality control coach with the Falcons in 2015 and Wagner’s OC in 2016. Rampant injuries have affected an already-limited offense, and Scangarello has helped UDFA Nick Mullens (18th in QBR) to some decent performances.
  • The Seahawks franchise is expected to be sold, but for the time being, Paul Allen‘s sister, Jody, is running the team. Allen confidant Bert Kolde is taking an expanded role during this time, Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times notes, adding that the status quo appears to be working at this point. Pete Carroll said Monday he was excited about the team’s current ownership situation, and Condotta adds indications point to Jody Allen continuing to serve as the team’s chairperson for a while.
  • The Cardinals have the inside track on the 2019 No. 1 pick, but one player believes (via the Arizona Republic’s Bob McManamon) the team has too many needs not to trade down. As of now, no quarterback is looking like a surefire top-five pick. Such a scenario has not unfolded since 2013. But as Baker Mayfield, Patrick Mahomes and Carson Wentz have shown, the pre-draft process can see some fast-rising prospects. If a member of this class gets to that point, the Cardinals could auction their pick off to a QB-needy team like the Jaguars, Giants or Broncos, McManamon offers. Entering the offseason, the Cardinals hold seven picks in the ’19 draft, their own seven.
  • Although the Raiders have discussed playing at the San Francisco Giants’ AT&T Stadium next season, the team has not picked a 2019 home yet. Listing possibilities, NBC Sports Bay Area suggests Stanford Stadium in Palo Alto, Calif. The Cardinal’s home field seats just more than 50,000 and is located a bit south of the 49ers’ Levi’s Stadium. This has not been mentioned as a consideration, and many cities have emerged as such thus far. The NFL wants the Raiders to decide on their 2019 home by Super Bowl LIII.