Pete Carroll shows the Seahawks a new path
Seattle hired Pete Carroll to take the reins for the 2010 season. Along with new general manager John Schneider, he wasted no time in setting things back to their natural order. The Seahawks won the NFC West in Carroll’s first year. Now, it may be a little strange that they were just 7-9, but they were still the best in a weak division. The Hawks quieted their doubters when they dispatched Drew Brees and his New Orleans Saints in a wild shootout, 41-36.
Due to their status as division champs, Seattle hosted the heavily favored defending Super Bowl champion Saints. Matt Hasselbeck threw four touchdowns in the win. Oh, and some guy they picked up in midseason apparently had a pretty cool run.
Carroll had laid the groundwork for future success earlier that year. In October, Seattle traded for a disgruntled running back who felt underappreciated and underused in Buffalo. It would take Marshawn Lynch a little time to get acclimated to Seattle, and for Seattle to figure out how to best use him. But Carroll had the bruising back he wanted. When Beast Mode sprang to life in that playoff run, the Seahawks were on their way to years of success.
Seattle gave up 35 in their next playoff matchup, this time against the Chicago Bears. Unfortunately, the offense only mustered 24 points, and the Hawks improbable playoff run was over. Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck was allowed to test the free agent market, despite his immense popularity with the 12s.
Part two of Carroll’s reshaping of the team was a more mobile quarterback. Initially, they thought that was Tarvaris Jackson. 2011 would prove Carroll wrong, as Seattle repeated its 9-7 record. This time there was no miraculous division title to go with it. Carroll wouldn’t find his quarterback until the following year. However, he had already found his defense.