Sat. Jun 15th, 2024

Albert Breer: Why the Seattle Seahawks coaching change is special

By meerna Jun12,2024

For the first time in 14 years, the Seattle Seahawks are preparing for a season without Pete Carroll on the bench.

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Last January, Seattle parted ways with its most successful head coach in franchise history and replaced him with 36-year-old rising coach Mike Macdonald, who was wrapping up a successful two-year career as the Baltimore Ravens’ defensive coordinator.

In a Sports Illustrated article published Monday morning, NFL insider Albert Breer of The MMQB detailed how the Seahawks selected Macdonald to succeed Carroll. Later that day, Breer joined Seattle Sports’ Bump and Stacy to discuss what he learned from his reporting.

One of Breer’s biggest takeaways is how unique this type of coaching change is in the NFL. As he explained, most new coaches take over a team that has had a disastrous season. Not so with Macdonald in Seattle. While the Seahawks’ player count declined during the second half of Carroll’s tenure, they still sat at 9-8 over the past two years.

“Nine times out of 10, a new coach comes in and inherits something that’s broken,” Breer said. “I don’t think that’s the case here. And while there were probably some things that needed updating, changing, or evolving, the basics of the show were good ones that Pete left behind.

Breer particularly noted the culture that Carroll had built. During his long run of success in Seattle, Carroll created an upbeat and energetic atmosphere unlike any other in the NFL. As an example, Breer cited a conversation he had two years ago with Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith.

“(Geno) said what drew him there and what he discovered when he got there was a really unique culture, a really unique atmosphere, unlike anything he had ever been a part of,” Breer said. “I think that’s a testament to how player-friendly it was and how different it was from a lot of other places in the league and how attractive it was to players.”

Not demolishing

Breer said the Seahawks wanted to find a coach who would build on that unique culture, rather than completely reject it and start over.

“I think instead of deconstructing it, the idea was, ‘How can we build on this?’ How do we find someone who can take what we’ve done and make it better?’” Breer said. “I think that’s probably why they avoided hiring a more task-oriented head coach like Mike Vrabel or Bill Belichick, who comes from that kind of tree, and looked for someone who could add another step to what was already there.”

Macdonald and his staff are bringing all kinds of formulaic changes to Seattle. But after talking to Macdonald and CEO John Schneider, Breer felt Macdonald was ideally suited to build on the culture Carroll had created.

“You listen to that energy, when you hear Mike and John talking to each other, you can really feel it,” Breer said. “You could really feel the energy that was in that building. There are some challenges with that, but Mike certainly embraced the idea that he was inheriting something that would be a good foundation for him to build on.”

Listen to the entire conversation with Albert Breer at this link or in the audio player at the top of this story. Listen to Bump and Stacy weekdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. or find the podcast on the Seattle Sports app.

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By meerna

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