The Seahawks held their annual Town Hall meeting tonight with some select fans in attendance, and anyone able to watch on-line.
And what maybe stood out the most was coach Pete Carroll’s impassioned speeches about the importance of creating turnovers on defense and preventing them on offense, and his commitment to running the ball.
“We want to run the football whenever we want to,” Carroll said with an attitude that made it clear the Seahawks don’t plan to change anytime soon.
“We are an absolutely committed running football team,” he said.
Carroll also talked of how quarterback Russell Wilson “gets it” when it comes to understanding the team’s philosophy of taking care of the ball. And if fans ever wonder about the importance Carroll places on the running game and turnovers, it was a rare chance to hear it directly from the coach himself.
Offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell and defensive coordinator Dan Quinn also spoke and added some of their insights.
Here are a few more highlights from each during sessions in which the coaches talked about overall philosophies and also took questions from the audience and moderators:
— Carroll, asked about the status of fullback Michael Robinson, says he hopes Robinson gets a chance to play somewhere else but that the Seahawks have “moved on” from him. Said he has talked to Robinson about coaching.
— In giving an assessment of what he has seen during OTAs, Carroll highlighted the play of third-year linebacker Korey Toomer, who missed last season with a knee injury, saying he has been “the hottest player” on the field so far. Carroll also noted the return to health of second-year CB Tharold Simon. Quinn said Simon has been a player who has “definitely caught our attention” in the early going.
— Quinn reiterated what has been previously said about Bruce Irvin and the rush end spot this year, saying “we are also hoping to take a larger role with Bruce Irvin” this year.
— Bevell, asked if the team will throw more this season, said plans can always fluctuate but that “to sit here and tell you we are going to throw it 500 times, that’s probably not going to happen. That’s not our philosophy. That’s not how we are built.” Seattle threw it 420 times last season.
— Bevell had high praise for the play so far of Christine Michael saying “we are really excited right now, what he’s done” and noted that Michael has improved particularly at “the details” of the position.
— Bevell also said that Michael could have a greater role this season and that could lead to having more of a “running back by committee” approach in 2014.
— Bevell also said the speed on offense could be the most the team has had, saying he’s “not sure I’ve ever had that much” speed to work with. “We are excited about it,” he said. “We’ll be able to have that this year.”
— Bevell, asked who will replace WR Golden Tate, said Doug Baldwin will move to the “X” or split end position this year, while also still playing some inside. Percy Harvin will play primarily the Z, or flanker, spot. He also said of Sidney Rice that they “really like what he’s looking like” and that he will also play outside.
— Of Marshawn Lynch not being at OTAs, Bevell said they “fully expect him to be ready to go” for the season.
— Carroll, asked about the punt return job, said again that Earl Thomas is first right now and noted that he was the primary backup last season so he got the most catches during practices. But he said there is lots of competition for the job and that “we will let this thing play out see how it goes.”
— Quinn, asked about the defensive game plan against the Broncos in the Super Bowl, said “you’d be surprised how many people called” to say they knew what some of Peyton Manning’s calls were at the line of scrimmage.
— Finally, Carroll was asked about the rivalry with the 49ers and Jim Harbaugh. He gave a lengthy answer in which he repeated his oft-stated philosophy about every week being a “championship opportunity” and how the team can’t afford to make one game any bigger than the other. But he ended with an applause line in saying that Harbaugh is “a great coach and we love beating him.”