Pete Carroll: Russell Wilson 'is in a great place right now' after rocky offseason
Seattle’s offseason of lingering drama seems to have cooled at just the right time.
After Russell Wilson kicked off the annual break from football activity by taking his concerns with the Seahawks public, things have grown quiet.
Pete Carroll says that’s because the two sides have come to a mutual understanding after having internal discussions that addressed the “stuff that was said that had to be dealt with.”
“Russ is in a great place right now, he’s been in a great place throughout the offseason,” Carroll said Wednesday. “We have communicated through all of the things just like I always have. This is not any different than it’s ever been, it’s the same way we’ve always communicated.
“I’ve always utilized all of the players that (have) information for me, if anybody had an insight that would help me figure out something or know a little bit something more about a situation, I felt free to call my guys and I’ve always been like that and Russ is a guy I always talk to about stuff. So, nothing’s changed.”
That’s great news for Seahawks fans, who were sent into a month or so of nervousness after Wilson made clear he was tired of being taken down by opposing defenders. Clearly, Seattle needed to do something about this issue, and it did in fact make one move, acquiring veteran guard Gabe Jackson to replace the retired Mike Iupati. On paper, it appears as if it’s an upgrade, with Jackson’s dependability coming to town to shore up at least one position. The rest of the line, however, remains unchanged.
That seems to be enough, at least according to Carroll, following communication with Wilson. But the coach also didn’t shy away from acknowledging the fact Wilson’s comments did draw plenty of negative media attention to the team.
“We realized that it was really obvious how a frustration comment can turn into so much follow-up and I think the speculation in the media was really an obvious factor in how his words were portrayed,” Carroll explained. “We don’t always say the right things, we don’t always do the right thing, so, whenever things comes out, whether it was Russell or anybody else I’ve ever dealt with on our team that’s a high-profile player in high-profile situations, we address all of it immediately and he knows exactly where I was coming from.
“I told him early on that this could be really a long issue that we’re dealing with in the media and I wasn’t going to say a word because I knew what the truth was.”
So as interested teams lit up Seattle’s phone following Wilson’s public comments, general manager John Schneider answered them, but never seriously negotiated a deal that would send the superstar quarterback elsewhere, he said. The truth, according to Carroll, was that Wilson wasn’t going anywhere.
“Russ has been our quarterback for a good while and we’ve got a long contract with him,” Carroll said. “And when all of the conversation went about trades and all that, I knew the truth: We weren’t trading Russell. We plan on him being here for a good while on the years it is now, but we’re in great shape and a long future ahead of us is shared.
“Russ knows that and I know that, we’re very clear about it. That’s why it was really obvious that we just had to sit back and let the media take its course with the topic and we did.”
Sometimes, silence is the best course of action when a controversy is swirling around a building. Carroll and Co. appear to have done an effective job of keeping that controversy from entering their facility, choosing instead to address the matter internally and focusing their efforts on improving heading into 2021.
Such efforts continue Thursday night through the weekend with the 2021 NFL Draft.
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