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Pete Carroll out as Seahawks head coach after 14 seasons, will remain with organization in adviser role

‘It’s been an honor and a thrill to be part of this program,’ Carroll said Wednesday

            Jonathan Jones

By Jonathan Jones of cbs sports contributing

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Pete Carroll is no longer the head coach of the Seattle Seahawks, the team announced. It ends a 14-year run with the Seahawks that brought the Pacific Northwest its only Super Bowl victory a decade ago. Seahawks team chairperson Jody Allen released a statement saying the longtime coach will transition into an adviser role.

Carroll also serves as the executive vice president of football operations in Seattle, so his departure marks a momentous shift in power with the top football decision-maker now out. It leaves yet another head coach opening in the NFL as the carousel continues around the league.

But as of just two days ago, Carroll said he expected to be back in 2024. 

“It’s been an honor and a thrill to be part of this program,” an emotional Carroll said Wednesday. “I’ve loved every minute of it. You’ve watched me love it in particular. It’s exciting that there’s such a future here. You can see it. We know it’s happening. It’s bright. The club’s got great places to go, and there’s great chances. It’ll never happen automatically. There’s a lot of work to be done and all of that, but the future is bright.” 

Former Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, who’s currently with the Cowboys, would be a leading candidate to take over in Seattle, sources say. 

Carroll, 72, narrowly missed the playoffs this season with a 9-8 record. In the last three years, the Seahawks put up a 25-26 record with just one playoff appearance. It has been a far cry from the run between 2012 and 2020 when the team won 68 percent of its games and had the second-best record in all of football during that span. 

The Seahawks hit the greatest of heights in the mid-2010s with the Legion of Boom on defense and Russell Wilson and Marshawn Lynch on offense. Seattle won Super Bowl XLVIII over the Broncos and narrowly lost the following season to the Patriots in a game that wound up collapsing the burgeoning dynasty. 

Carroll, the oldest coach in the NFL, signed a five-year contract extension in 2020. He finishes his career in Seattle with a regular-season record of 137-89-1. His overall regular-season record is 170-120-1, including three years in New England and a year as the Jets head coach in 1994. 

On Wednesday, sources told CBS Sports the Seahawks had postponed their coaches meetings — originally scheduled for Wednesday — until Thursday. Then an all-staff meeting was called for 1 p.m. ET.

The vacancy in Seattle makes seven open head coaching positions in the NFL along with the RaidersPanthersChargersCommandersFalcons and Titans. The NFL world continues to wait on what happens in New England with Bill Belichick. 

It’s unclear at the moment the immediate direction of the Seahawks franchise. Carroll has controlled football operations since he got there, with GM John Schneider collaborating with the head coach. Allen took over for her late brother, Paul, after he passed away in 2018, and she is now tasked with the biggest decision in franchise history under her watch.