Here are quotes f and interviews from the Seahawks 28 to 21 win over the Arizona Cardinals. The win put the Seahawks back in first place in the NFC West .
PETE CARROLL: Really fired up about this game tonight. Our guys really wanted to turn things and get back on track. And even with all of the situations with all the guys in and out and the lineup and all that, it just didn’t matter tonight. The guys played really well across the board. Special teams were lights out for us, great efforts in coverage and the kicks and all that. The defense did a really nice job tonight. Gave up 50-something-yards rushing and kept them under wraps. Save the penalties, we really would have had a really big night tonight on defense.
Offense played really efficient. No turnovers, which was great. 160-something yards rushing. Russ was really efficient tonight and really sharp. Ran well when he had his chances. It was just a really good night of football. And it was great to see Carlos Dunlap finish it off on almost a walk-off sack, which was pretty cool and really fun. And great to see him continue to contribute and help us. We’re, I know that you have been hearing me talk about it, but we’re getting well here soon and we’re going to get better and we’re going to be stronger and we’re going to be better for it. And we have a chance to really put together a good opportunity here for us of playing good ball week-in and week-out. So it’s a big win, playing in the division, and to come out of it in first place, that’s a good deal for us and we’re fired up about it. Couple days off too. Guys are going to get three days off, so it’s a mini-break for us and we’ll take advantage of that. Really got to kick butt COVID-wise and then we’ll come back and get going for the next week.
Q. You were talking all week about the need to get balance on offense, and it was clearly evident with Carlos Hyde out there. What a difference he made for the offense with his hard running, the juice he gave you guys. How much did you see that impact the game plan defensively for the Cardinals?
PETE CARROLL: It felt like the Seahawks. It felt like the Seahawks that we have all seen over the years. Carlos did a great job tonight. He did exactly what we needed. We needed him to run hard and run tough, knock people backwards, and make extra yards with his juice. And the guys up front responded with him. I don’t know, we had 80 yards or something like that. That was a really good contribution to this effort tonight. And it balanced us out just like we talked about. Russ didn’t have to throw for 400 yards to have a big night. He had a big night throwing for just under 200. And so yeah, Carlos had a great factor that he played tonight for us.
Q. What changed for the defense? And how important is the performance like that against a top offense?
PETE CARROLL: It’s really important for us. We’ll see. We got to keep coming back and keep going. We’re just, really, it feels like we’re just getting started. You got Jamal out there playing and you saw more of Jordyn Brooks, who is a really good ball player in our base stuff. He played a lot. Carlos did a really nice job. I thought D.J. (Reed) did a really nice job at corner. I thought Tre (Flowers) played really well. So there’s a lot of stuff that happened. L.J. (Collier) made a couple huge plays. He had a sack and he forces the safety down in the end zone. That’s just a lot of good stuff. There’s no reason that we can’t come together and play really good football. There’s no reason, and from this point forward. We just have to get comfortable with everybody that’s out there. And Shaq will return to us when we come back. Some pretty good things are happening. So I’m really excited. It was a good night for us.
Q. Did you have an idea that explosive passing game might be hard to come by. It looked like Russ didn’t really try to force much down field, lots of stuff schemed open off boots and play action.
PETE CARROLL: I thought it fit just right. I thought Russ did exactly what he said he was going to do. He came back and tried to play really good solid football and make sure that he made really good quick decisive decisions. Did it. His scrambles were really effective tonight. His movement was great. I thought all of his decision-making was excellent. He didn’t force anything. He didn’t put us in any kind of harm at all and had a great night of football.
Q. How much of that is on Brian Schottenheimer for getting him in good spots in kind of a bounce back game for him?
PETE CARROLL: Yeah, I think it was a good night for the whole crew. Brian, Austin Davis, those guys working with Russ, Dave Canales, those guys. They’re all teaming together to make sure that we’re giving us the best chance to do things consistently well and we did it and so it was a nice night.
Q. What did you think of just Carlos’s game tonight and the difference he’s made in the, whatever it is, three games that he’s been with you guys?
PETE CARROLL: Yeah, he’s really, he’s been a boost. We have had a lot of sacks in the last three or four weeks now and that’s changing things. I don’t know what we had tonight but it was enough to make a factor in the pass rush. He really helps us and we desperately needed him. The first week he barely knew what was going on. Week 2 he’s getting it going and he really is comfortable now and fits right in, and it was really thrilling to see him come up with a game-winner like that.
Q. Do you have an update on Greg Olsen?
PETE CARROLL: Yeah. It’s a little early but he has a fascia tear injury that he’s had before in his other foot. He knows exactly what it is. And sometimes when it ruptures like it did, we think, it’s the best thing for a quick recovery. So we’ll see what happens and wish him the best and hopefully he can make it back. The fact that he’s already had this before really helps him understand what’s coming up.
Q. To clarify: When you say “make it back,” are you talking about back next season or potentially later this season?
PETE CARROLL: I don’t know that yet. There’s been some marvelous returns for guys who do that, rupture their fascia, that would blow you away. Right now, he’s in really a lot of discomfort and all that, but we’ll see what happens. I can’t tell you any more than that. It’s pretty early to be talking about it, obviously.
Q. What led to the decision to go with Damien Lewis at center? And then along with that, do you have an update on Brandon Shell’s injury?
PETE CARROLL: Well, that was our best choice. He’s such a good athlete, and of course right off the bat he gets in trouble on the one play and had a couple penalties tonight. I mean, his head was full of all kind of thoughts. It was a marvelous job by him to pull that off. He started working it last week. He had been taking snaps during the early season and stuff, but he really, because of the injuries last week, he
had to get ready to maybe to back up and so now he’s forced into action and he pulled it off. So, and what an effort. He’s a really, really good football player. He’s really smart, and he’s so poised, it just, he handled it really well and he’ll only get better. That just makes him that much more versatile. You asked about Brandon Shell. He’s got a sprained ankle. I don’t know how bad it is. We don’t know that.
Q. You talked earlier about how Carlos Dunlap really didn’t know what he was doing because he was new to the team. Now that he’s been with the team for a few weeks, what kind of impact do you think that he could have on your season given his pedigree?
PETE CARROLL: First off, he did everything he could. He showed up on Wednesday so, the first week, and so it’s pretty hard to really absorb all the stuff you have to absorb here. But anyway, he is going to be a big factor for us. He just is a really good football player. He’s a monster of a guy out there. He knows the game. He can have adjust well. He’s flexible and can do a lot of things for us. He’s learned his stuff beautifully already and away we go. So I think it’s a very positive affect on us at this point and it’s going to be only better. We’re a couple weeks away from seeing (Darrell) Taylor come back to us too. That might be a real good boost we can get, and it will be nice to see how it all fits together here. We got Benson (Mayowa) back for the first time in a while. I don’t know how much Benson played yet, but it was great to have him back out there too.
Q. You guys got three sacks and seven quarterback hits on Murray after getting zero first meeting. What was the biggest difference?
PETE CARROLL: I think Kenny (Norton) was, went after him differently and adjusted stuff from the last time we played him. You don’t, maybe you don’t see it this way, but the last time we played them, until like three or four minutes left in the game, we had been in pretty good shape with these guys. We had done some really good things. And I went back and watched the film tonight before the game just to go ahead and see it one more time and we played like that throughout the whole game this time. So we were adjusted, we were ready, and we took advantage of Carlos (Dunlap) being part of it, and some of the situations, we moved some guys around and it worked out really well.
Q. You touched on it earlier, but Arizona came into the game leading the league in rushing. How were you guys able to eliminate that from their attack?
PETE CARROLL: It was a really, really good job by the guys on the edge and Carlos was part of that. You also saw K.J. (Wright) as part of that. Alton Robinson came in and Benson. All those guys had to do their job to keep that running game from getting on the perimeter. You saw them get out a couple times, but really just play after play after play, the guys just kept executing really well and were disciplined about it. This guy poses so many problems. He’s been a nightmare for defenses. And tonight we felt like we had a pretty good feel for what we needed to do and the at guys executed it beautifully.
Q. You mentioned the success of the running game tonight, and how big of a boost that was for you. Was it even more so maybe because you had Damien Lewis at center, Jamarco Jones at right guard, and Cedric Ogbuehi even at tackle later to keep them from teeing off on Russ?
PETE CARROLL: Exactly. We got guys jumping in to play for — Damien’s never played center, I don’t know if he even played center when he was a young kid. Jamarco jumps in at guard. And those are major opportunities for us to be in trouble and our guys came through. It could have been a hard night against
a good group and it wasn’t, the guys came through beautifully, the coaching was organized just right to take advantage of it. And then you could see the feel that Carlos (Hyde) gives us, that’s what we have been looking for. That’s what we have been talking about, that’s what Chris (Carson) brings. And it’s a different, we’re a whole different team in style when those guys are pounding away at it. So Chris will play next week, unless he has a setback, he’ll be ready to go. Rashaad Penny is only a couple weeks away from being back. So we’re getting, we’re getting stronger, if this works out right and we could be really healthy going down the stretch here. Is that the epitome of optimism? We’re leading the league in injuries and I’m telling you how strong we’re going to be down the stretch. But, I don’t know, that’s what it feels like.
Q. Going back to the defense, the discipline and execution, is that due to the, now the continuity that’s building that you talked about that?
PETE CARROLL: Yes, yes.
Q. Is that what it looks like?
PETE CARROLL: It is. It’s what we have been waiting to see. And you just have to keep the guys out there together so that they can communicate. There was so many situations in this game tonight when K.J. to Jamal (Adams), Jamal to Bobby, and to (Quandre) Diggsy, talking about stuff that we had to fix and tweak as the game was going on and their ability to just handle that and make good choices and stuff, just kept us a step ahead the whole time. And that’s what happens when you play together, that’s what continuity looks like. And that’s what — you just have to be out there and you have to find the time — we have not logged enough time together to max that out, but who cares, it’s all, that’s already gone, it’s, what are we going to do about it, it’s now that counts and see if we can put this thing together.
Q. DK Metcalf, obviously a lot has been made about him going up against tougher DB’s, but he handled himself well tonight against Patrick Peterson and there was a brouhaha there in the middle. How did you see him perform tonight?
PETE CARROLL: I thought he played excellent football. We had a few more shots that we were trying to get and one thing led to another that we couldn’t get the ball out to him rush-wise or something like that. And he was ready it really go tonight now. I thought he played a terrific game. He was tough as always. He got them riled up and we got a big penalty when we needed one.
On the dart throw to DK Metcalf that went off his face mask:
“Yeah, you know, I gave him the Randy Johnson fastball there on that one. A good old Seattle reference. But he went right behind Patrick Peterson there and tried to laser one into him there. The ball hit him right off the nose, I think. So we were joking about it in the locker room a little bit.”
On the touchdown play to Tyler Lockett:
“We have some little magic in some things here. I don’t like talking about plays too much. That was a great play by him. He did a great job with spinning out and making a great play.”
On how Carlos Hyde’s running style and game improves the offense:
“Carlos is a great runner. Tremendous job today. We knew we wanted to be physical with these guys when we did run it, and he was physical as could be. He had so many great runs, so many great plays. He was special today. And he’s been great for us when he’s been in there. So I love the type of runner he is, the type of person he is too. And he’s a guy who has rushed for over a thousand yards, done some amazing things in this league. A great vet that’s really helped us out and he was terrific today. And then guys like DJ Dallas have been great for us too. He made a couple key plays for us today, some third downs and different things. And so just really excited about how the running backs played tonight. They did some great things in the passing and obviously the running game.”
On what the offense is capable of when when balanced like tonight:
“I think that we’re capable of anything all the time. I think that, obviously to not have our running backs and stuff like that, obviously guys like Chris Carson and guys like Carlos, some of the best in the league. So anytime you lose some of the best players in the league, that always hurts a little bit for sure, and so we’re really excited about getting Carson back and Carlos and what those guys can help us do and give us so much versatility. We want to able to obviously throw it and do our things in the passing game, but obviously, too, we want to be able to run it. We love running it and we love that attack of being able to run the football so efficiently, making huge first downs. Anytime we can rush for — I’m not sure what we rushed for, but I would assume 150 to 200. I don’t know. 165? Yeah. So we had a lot of amazing runs and that controls the game. We got to a lot of checks, a lot of plays, changed the plays a bunch and got to some really cool runs. And Coach Schotty and I were on it all day, just communicating. I thought he called a great game. We made it challenging for their defense. They’re a great defense. They had all these different pressures, all these different things that they do, so much versatility that they do, and we really did a good job of protecting it and blocking it up and doing some things and being prepared. To come in on a Thursday night for defense on a team like that with Arizona and how much stuff they do, the versatility, the experience of what we have been able to do in the past and just preparation of how we do things and, it was all preparation tonight. I think the win goes to the preparation column because I think that we did an unbelievable job of getting prepared for them and getting ready to play football.”
On keeping things simple and how much fun it is to play this game:
“I love playing this game. I think it’s a great question. I think that, obviously I love playing this game. And there’s always highs and lows. There’s always tough challenges, but I think great players always know, one, how to be consistent; and two, how to consistently adjust and how to consistently overcome. And I think that for me I just, that’s my mentality all the time. I tell you guys all the time, I want to be neutral, I want to be able to remain calm in the midst of the storm, this and that. And just, I know the kind of player that I am. I know what I’m capable of. And they do too. And I think that, the other teams and stuff like that. So just staying in attack mode. I think that we were able to do that in the passing game today. We had some key plays. We had some plays that got called back, actually, and just stuff like that. So we had even more out there. And I thought it was a great game. And I think ultimately for me personally, like I told you guys last week, I know who I am, I know what kind of player I am. I’m never going to doubt it. And we let it rip and did some cool things today and just felt completely in control the whole game in terms of all us the calls that we were doing at the line and different things that we were doing.”
Thoughts on Damien Lewis getting the start at center and the offensive line as a whole:
“Man, I don’t think D-Lew’s ever played center before; is that right? I think that he has never played center before. He did a tremendous job stepping in there all week, honestly, especially on a short week against the Arizona Cardinals, all the things they do. But I thought he was super confident. He adjusted throughout the game. He made great calls. We were on the same page, me and him. There was a couple plays here and there, but I thought that to be a rookie, to play, be such a great guard, and then have to move to center this game and not knowing what’s going to happen here and I thought he did a tremendous job. He’s one of my favorite rookies on the team just because of how, his approach to the game. He’s even keel, he’s steady, he’s focused, he’s ready to roll every week, and he’s a tremendous player for us.”
On what new chapter Carlos Dunlap II has been writing in Seattle and how he expects his story to play out after watching him Thursday:
“First of all, I think you got to give credit to John Schneider and Pete to get a guy like Carlos Dunlap. He’s such a superstar. He’s a guy who can really help us. You need those kind of players especially in our division, the kind of guys. Him coming off the edge is a huge factor. I know he sacked me a few times and hit me pretty hard a few times in the past. But just to have a great guy, a great teammate. He’s been awesome in the locker room. He’s obviously been tremendous in the field. He’s such a huge factor to the game and he causes havoc. And obviously, fourth and 10, for him to make a huge sack in that situation was an unbelievable play. It won the game right there for us in that moment. And just to have, he’s a winner by nature. He, maybe he hasn’t won in the past as much, but he’s a true winner by nature and just he’s, we love it about him. He’s a great team player. He’s got everything you could want, obviously the ability, but also the character and the focus and the, just how much he loves the game. He’s smiling from ear to ear and hopefully we can keep that winning going.”
On how having no fans at games has affected the team:
“Yeah, it definitely has changed a lot. I think, obviously us being in Lumen Field now, I guess we call it. But us being in Lumen Field — I was about to say CenturyLink, but things change I guess. But for us to be here in Lumen Field and to have no fans, it’s definitely different. We miss our fans. We miss our 12s. It’s, honestly, it was funny because I was talking to somebody the other day and I was telling somebody just how electric this city is, being in Bellevue and all that stuff, you have Snowflake Lane they call it, right, and just going to the hotel and stuff, you don’t have all that energy, even seeing people wear jerseys and all the energy of our fans. And, obviously, COVID has changed things, obviously this season’s definitely different, but I know our fans are watching at home, they’re cheering us on like crazy and it means a lot to us. And the more support that we can get, obviously even though you guys aren’t here with us physically, it means the world to us. And it’s definitely changed the game a little bit, but I do believe that when you’re passionate about the game, like the players that we have as a collective group, it doesn’t matter wherever we play it. I used to always say, Run to the Buick and get open, like in the parking lot, you run to the Buick and get open or you run, you know, so it’s like, it’s one of those things that, it’s fun, so just grateful just to be able to play this game for sure.”
On the offense being more on time and the passing game Thursday:
“We did a tremendous job. Like I said, they’re pressure packages is very, very good, all the things they do. I thought this week the preparation of this week was unbelievable. We have had great weeks obviously before and all that too. And we have been able to light it up for the most part of the season, we had a little tough run there for a couple games, but the reality is some of the things we have been doing in the passing game is really special because of the receivers, the tight ends that we have, the running backs, all the things they do, the offensive line’s been great throughout this season and battled throughout the season and there’s been some tough challenges, a bunch of injuries and things that we have had to overcome, but to come out today after some of the stuff we have gone through the past couple weeks and to be so focused, so dialed in, having no fear, ready to roll. I think that what we were able to do in the protection game to block some things up, make all the calls that we needed to make up front, do all those different things, especially even with D-Lew, being a rookie, you know, to — being a rookie but also being a center in his first game going against these guys and how he handled all my calls and all the different things we were doing, it was tremendous. And I think the receivers really made some special plays today key plays in key moments, tight ends and stuff like that. So I thought we were able to do everything we wanted to do.”
On how reassuring the defense’s performance was and what changed:
“Huge thing is the defense just keeps getting better and better. We’re excited about who we are as a team, we believe that as we continue to go through the season — this has always been the case here — we always have this growth and this trajectory of continuing to grow and get better. I think that the exciting part for us is that we all sense that, we all feel that and we can control that too as well, in terms of how we prepare, how we get ready, how each game goes. And we feel really excited about where we’re going. I think the defense played unbelievable tonight, especially against a very good offense and all the things they can do, but I thought our defense was unbelievable. Obviously guys like Jamal, Diggs, Bobby Wagner is insane, KJ made some great plays, I think that — you think about Carlos Dunlap making that huge sack. You know, I think LJ played a good game, had some key plays so everybody coming together and we’re going to get healthier, we’re going to get better and we’re going to keep growing.”
On what Damien Lewis said to him and what he said to Lewis after being sacked on the first play of the game:
“Just first play of the game just happened, didn’t say anything. Just ready to roll for the next play. I’m not a huge talker out there, you know, I stay focused on the next play and just transition my mind to the next moment. And the more that you can stay in neutral and just focus on the next moment and the next play, that’s such a key component of the game, especially playing this position. Because they got good players too. And so I thought we played a great game overall, I thought we really, collectively, were special today, excited to keep swinging, keep making plays and all the things we were able to do. I thought we were really decisive in all our decisions, from the passing game to the running games to the checks and all the stuff we did. I think Schotty called a great game, I thought we all collectively were on our stuff. We were great in the red zone once again. It was fun, it was a lot of fun and got to love winning, we love winning. The process is the key. And, Seahawks, we like celebrating the win, so that was huge.”
ARIZONA CARDINALS KYLER MURRAY
QB Kyler Murray
On how his arm is feeling and if it affected his ability to compete today:
“No, just came up short. Didn’t execute when we needed to. Had our chances. We just didn’t play well enough.”
On his lack of chances to rush the ball himself tonight:
“I think it was just the flow of the game. I don’t think we had a lot of rushing yards tonight, anyway. That was just the way they were playing it. We had our chances, we just didn’t play well enough to win the game.”
On what bothered him the most about this loss tonight:
“Probably just the little self-inflicted penalties. Just really shooting ourselves in the foot. It wasn’t a clean game, by any means. Easier said than done to play those, but that’s just uh… we have to be better. We say every week to give ourselves the best possible chance to win the game and that doesn’t help you.”
On if Seattle played them differently than last time to prevent the run:
“They definitely planned for me in certain situations. We put up 21 and had a chance to win at the end. Throughout the game we started off slow and just kept shooting ourselves in the foot. They won the game but I think we can play a lot better.”
On what Seattle was doing to take away WRs DeAndre Hopkins and Christian Kirk:
“I don’t want to say they were taking them away. I think it just took us making an adjustment to start getting to the things that got them the ball. If you asked them, they were probably open all game. It just took a while to make those adjustments. Part of that is on me. Like I said, we have to be better, we will be better. Obviously it’s a tough night.”
On if his arm was bugging him throughout the game:
“No, I’m good.”