CHAD: Pete Carroll makes it impossible to root for the Seahawks
NORMAN CHAD January 10, 2014 9:34PM
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson throws before an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts in Indianapolis, Sunday, Oct. 6, 2013. (AP Photo/Brent R. Smith)
Updated: January 11, 2014 4:25PM
There is one reason to admire the Seattle Seahawks: Russell Wilson. But there might be close to 100 reasons not to admire the Seahawks, and 92 of them involve Pete Carroll.
So though I love the city of Seattle, root for the Mariners and wish the SuperSonics were still there, every ounce of NFL blood in my perpetually prone body will be dedicated to seeing someone beat the Seahawks between now and Super Bowl 48.
First up were the Saints on Saturday.
(I sent a check for $149.95 to the Saints’ coaching staff last week to provide beignets, cinnamon rolls and Dr. Brown’s Diet Black Cherry for their week of preparation.)
The Seahawks are 13-3 because, with Wilson at quarterback, they play smart offensive football, coupled with bruising defensive football. A fan could fall in love with them, except they’re already so in love with themselves.
The wide receivers signal first down after every catch. The linebackers pound their chests after every defensive stop. It’s a miracle half the players aren’t on injured reserve from spraining their arms trying to pat themselves on the back.
(FYI: Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman is the only Stanford graduate to earn a bachelor’s degree in trash-talking.)
Nobody on the Seahawks just makes a play and goes back to the huddle. They are a chirping, preening lot of look-at-me-I’m-the-baddest-man-on-the-planet showboaters.
Sooner or later, the Seahawks are going to give up a touchdown while celebrating a hard hit.
All of this is a reflection of Carroll, their around-the-clock, strut-and-swagger leader.
(Column intermission: My AFC Team of Destiny, the Kansas City Chiefs, brought me unbridled joy this season with their turnaround from 2-14 to 11-5. All that pleasure dissolved into agonizing pain last Saturday with their crushing defeat to the Indianapolis Colts. Watching the Chiefs’ 38-10 lead become a 45-44 loss took 3½ years off the back end of my life, which might affect my mortality as soon as next week. As a courtesy, I hope Andy Reid delivers my eulogy.)
You may recall Carroll from USC, which he left under NCAA sanctions because of improper benefits for Reggie Bush that Carroll supposedly knew nothing about. Bush forfeited his Heisman Trophy, while Carroll flew first-class to his next job in Seattle.
The Seahawks have led the NFL in substance-abuse suspensions — five — since Carroll became their coach in 2010. He is the only coach in NFL history with an offensive coordinator, a defensive coordinator and a PED coordinator.
Of course, Carroll seemingly is never aware of any malfeasance or abnormality around him. If the Abscam sting were run out of his lap, he would tell you he didn’t even know he had a lap.
(FYI, again: At Seahawks games, the crowd is known as ‘‘the 12th man.’’ In fact, the 12th man in Seattle is some guy named ‘‘Junebug’’ who provides Adderall to many defensive starters.)
During games, Carroll bounds along the sideline. Sometimes he sprints alongside a play if, say, the Seahawks force a turnover and are returning it for a score. Sometimes he rips off his headset and charges toward an official to argue a call.
He spends so much time on the field, they should just give him his own whistle.
My disdain for Carroll grew out of a moment I witnessed before he was even a head coach.
It was a New York Jets-at-Miami Dolphins game on Dec. 20,
1992. After a touchdown catch by Tony Martin with 2:30 left in the fourth quarter, Dolphins kicker Pete Stoyanovich missed an extra point that would’ve tied the score. The TV cameras caught Carroll, then the defensive coordinator of the Jets, gleefully putting his hands around his neck in a choke sign.
What a lovely, classy gesture, I thought.
(By the way, karma kicked in, as Stoyanovich made a 37-yard field-goal attempt with seven seconds left to give the Dolphins a 19-17 victory.)
Trust me, Carroll doesn’t deserve Wilson. He deserves a 19-17 playoff loss.
Ask The Slouch
Q. Watching some of the bowl games, I wondered what those ‘‘thingies’’ are on the helmets of the players. Are they awards for each class they have attended during the year? (John P. Donnelly, Reston, Va.)
A. It seems rather unlikely any player could attend that many classes in any year.
Q. It took the Cleveland Browns only one year to realize Rob Chudzinski wasn’t going to be a top-notch NFL coach. How long did it take your ex-wives to determine you weren’t going to be a top-notch husband? (Bill Lehky, Strongsville, Ohio)
A. In either my first or second marriage, I believe there were rumblings on our honeymoon night.
Q. Since the Tampa Bay Buccaneers hired Lovie Smith, does that absolve them of the Rooney Rule requirement of a sham minority interview or must they still speed-dial Ted Cottrell? (Scott D. Shuster, Watertown, Mass.)
A. Pay the man, Shirley.
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