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December 9, 2013 at 6:59 PM

What they said: Pete Carroll

Here’s what Seahawks coach Pete Carroll had to say to the media today in the aftermath of Sunday’s 19-17 loss at San Francisco:

(Opening…) “As you look at the tape of the game, it’s so obvious that it was a really hard-fought, competitive game and the game that’s as close as this was, plays and calls and situations all get amplified and can become more significant. There were a few plays here and there that you either make or don’t make that make then difference in the game. We get the punt return to set up our field position. Had a really good shot to go ahead. Unfortunately, we don’t score in the end zone in that situation. We get a field goal and that could’ve made a big difference in the game. They get their big run at the end of the game, sets up their field goal and makes the difference. That’s how close the game was and very, very competitive and I think the kind of game that probably would’ve expected. We would’ve loved to come out on top. We had our chance and we let the opportunity get away. So we crank it up. I t’s really important, as we have throughout regardless of what the game is before, you have to handle it properly and put it in the right perspective and move forward effectively. So we have a big game, big trip coming up going to New York this week and so we’ll turn it towards that.”

 (On KJ Wright and Max Unger’s injury status…) “Hadn’t heard any more on KJ [Wright]. Max [Unger], he’ll be in limited fashion during the week. We think we’ll get him for the ball game. I don’t have any more information on KJ [Wright], but he’s scheduled to get operated on tomorrow. So that’s enough for you I guess.”

(On if KJ Wright will be back during the post season…) “We’ll find out I think after they do the surgery and find out what the extent of it was and all that. 4-6 weeks. 6 weeks usually on broken bones is what they talk about and he’s a good healer. So we’ll see how he does.”

(On Malcolm Smith being KJ Wright’s replacement and Smith’s versatility…) “Yeah. Malcolm [Smith] goes to ‘Will,’ which is his long time, natural position. That’s where he has played a lot for us over the years. He understands the position really well; he’s a fantasti It can help if you utilize it. It’s a learning opportunity again, a reality check, how the littlest of things can determine the outcome of a game and being in a good, hard-fought, tough game is good always. I c athlete, really good coverage guy/speed guy on the field. So he’s played quite a bit for us this year. We’re comfortable with him playing and he should do a good job for us.”

(On if a loss can help a team refocus…) “I don’t think there’s any question. like the others to learn the hard way as always, but that’s not the case. So there’ll be an emphasis throughout the last three games of this year. Every one of them is going to count in a big fashion. They’re all going to make a difference that will call for us to be on it all the way throughout and that should be crucial in helping us stay sharp for playoff time. So they’re all going to be hard games and difficult match ups and all that and crucial and we’ll do everything we can to get them. But most of all, I want to make sure that our play continues to be out there for us, where we can improve and get better. So we’ll look to get that done.”

 (On Frank Gore’s run…) “We just over ran it, just over ran the tackle. A number of guys had a chance. Kam [Chancellor] had a real shot at it, just floated over the top of the run. Earl [Thomas] had a shot at it as it came back underneath and it got back all the way to Sherm [Richard Sherman]. Sherm [Richard Sherman] got nicked by a blocker and just didn’t get off of it cleanly and he took off and hit it. We were going this way and he was going that way. So they blocked it well up front, but we had plenty of shots to keep it to being an eight-to-nine yard gain. Something like that, ten yard gain and that’s what we needed to do on that play and unfortunately, it got out, they took full advantage of it, he hit it just right and it was a nice play by them.”

(On how much he thought about giving the 49ers a chance to score and get the ball back…) “No that’s a serious decision that you can make. We don’t have examples in our history or in our backgrounds of any of the guys that we’ve been around. I don’t know if you guys can come up with any, where anybody has ever done that has worked. If it has, I don’t know. But we do know that’s an alternative. I remember it’s happened before. People have tried it. So it was clearly… I was clear about it and decided to go and ‘see if we can knock the ball down. See if we can get them out of here’ and just to stay with the principles of doing it on defense. But when we have a guy like Russell [Wilson] and our offense, they can hit it in two minutes and we’re really good at it; it does give us that option.”

(On the balance between controlling the clock and your emotions…) “That’s exactly one of the issues. I think there’s a decision to be made about that, as the situation rises and it has to do with a lot more than that. It has to do with the time; it has to do with your offense versus their defense, your quarterback and all that. We have some factors that are pretty obvious. Like I said, we know that our offense can go down the field in two minutes on anybody. You give us four plays to make a first down, we really believe we can get that done. Russell [Wilson] is great at it. Those are all of the considerations.”

(On if he could envision a scenario where he would give an opponent the opportunity to score …) “It’s possible. Yeah that’s why we talked about it. It is one of the alternatives. Yeah. So it’s a possibility.”

(On the penalties…) “Well it’s frustrating because you’re looking for consistency, and sometimes it was and sometimes it wasn’t. I don’t think that was the story of the game at all. In terms of where I would be criticizing the officials, I don’t see it as that, but penalties really were a big factor in the game. Particularly in the three drives on offense that wound up in major penalties, and we didn’t overcome them, so those drives got wasted. All three of those penalties were on really successful plays, all first down plays so that was a big factor. On two of the three plays if the penalty wouldn’t have been called anybody would’ve said anything about it. I don’t think they were necessarily poor calls; we’re just looking for consistency at all times.”

(On Michael Robinson’s grabbing the face mask penalty…) “It’s the grasp thing and it was really quick. Mike’s hand was on the guy facemask and there was a little bit of a pull so they can call that, and there’s nothing wrong with that call, it’s just unfortunate and such an unusual thing. The fullback never gets his hand on a guy’s face. How that happened I don’t know, but it did. He initiated the block and it started to move, and then it just popped for a second, he released and that was it. It was not part of the block in that guy for the success of the play, but it’s legit. I’m not going to stand here and criticize the officials and make that sound like that was part of this game, I don’t think it was. From our side of it we need to stay out of those situations because those are the ones that we didn’t overcome properly or well enough to make the drives go. We had nine legitimate drives in the game and three of them got stopped because of our penalties. That’s only six real good shots at taking the ball down the field. That’s difficult and that’s why it felt like we weren’t on offense that much in the game. It felt like we weren’t out there because we got backed up three different times. A lot of times we overcome those, but we didn’t yesterday. That’s a sign of a good team and the good defense we played against.”

(On Percy Harvin’s practice status…) “We’re going to go to Wednesday and find out if he can go and if he can practice on Wednesday. We’ll find out.”

(On Brandon Browner’s status…) “We’re not getting any indication at all about any time frames so we’re just trying to get him healthy and get him back. That’ll be until Wednesday. We wouldn’t know until Wednesday if he could practice or not.”

(On if Jermaine Kearse will return kickoffs…) “Yeah he’s ready. The two of those guys will handle it. Robert Turbin is going first; we’re trying to teach him how to do it. We like the thought of a big guy running up in there. He’s really secure with the football too so we’re going to keep him going for now.”

(On Jeremy Lane and Byron Maxwell’s performance…) “Well they did really well again. They’re going to catch a couple of balls on you when they try as much as they did yesterday. They caught a couple of routes underneath on Maxwell, but he played two well and stole one for an interception. He played really well, he did a good job. Jeremy had three plays in the game that were all significant plays. He got in the throwing lane, knocked the ball down, and defended his guys very well and had a couple on third down. Both of those guys are doing a fine job. No surprises here, this is what we expect of these guys. I think probably the demands of Jeremy in the nickel spot has really been uplifting that he’s handled all of the assignments and the rules and all of that, and then played effectively too. That’s a really good competitive sign for us in the future. It’ll be a couple weeks before we get Walter Thurmond back so it’ll be a competitive situation when he comes back.”

(On if Russell Wilson not scrambling against the 49ers was designed…) “We pass protected really well, we picked guys up well, and gave him a chance to throw the football. They looked to be concentrating on him in the running game to keep him from getting the football so the ball got handed off a lot. We were looking for opportunities, but it just wasn’t there and we handled it right and read it right throughout the game.”

(On James Carpenter and Paul McQuistan’s performance…) “They both did fine, they both competed well. James did a good job. There are always a couple of plays here and there, but he did a pretty nice job. We’ll let you know what we’ll be doing this week, later.”

(On the differences of battling reputation at USC and battling reputation for the Seahawks with having physical DBs and a physical team…) “Well when you win a lot of games it’s just natural. At USC we had won so much, I had noticed that there was a statistic that jumped out that I thought was really fascinating that the teams that we had played in our conference, when they had played us they were penalized the least of any team. I thought that was really interesting the first year, but then it happened like five years in a row, and I thought okay how could that possibly happen. It wasn’t like we got penalized more, our opponents got penalized less. I pointed it every year and there was never an explanation for it, and there isn’t really if there’s not an explanation, it just happened. So I kind of thought that was human nature. I kind of got used to thinking that was going to be a differential that we’d have to deal with and we never made a big deal about it. We won’t make a big deal about it now either, I don’t care. We have to play really well and we can’t be in the mode where that’s going to be a factor every week. This week it hurt us a little bit in a really close game. That’s not surprising; we know that that’s going to happen. You guys were like aye someday that is going to come get you; well it did get us a little bit in this game. They had seven penalties for a good amount of yards too; it wasn’t like there was a big differential in this game. I don’t see the same thing as what happened at USC happening. That took a while to develop that kind of reputation. I’ve just seen it before, I’ve felt it before as a coach. If it happens to show up I’ll be familiar with it, that’s all.”

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