SEATTLE — Pete Carroll said revenge was never part of his thought process in beating the team he used to coach, the New England Patriots.
But hell take Sundays victory just the same.
That was a long time ago, Carroll said. And theres been a lot of games. I really love (New England owner) Robert Kraft. Hes a great man. Hes been great throughout the years about our separation. And I respect the heck out of him.
But Im a competitor. So, heck yeah, I want to win against those guys.
Carroll was fired by New England more than a decade ago after three seasons as coach of the Patriots, including two trips to the playoffs.
But Carroll said that tough experience in New England helped reshape his coaching philosophy, leading to a successful run at USC in his next head coaching gig.
Seattle defensive lineman Red Bryant said Carroll was careful to show the proper respect for his former team and its accomplishments over the years, but also let his players know this was a game they could win.
We respected the fact that we knew it was going to be this kind of game, Bryant said. And he showed a lot of confidence in what we do. Ive been on teams with coaches where youre playing a Tom Brady-like player, and they overemphasize how great the player is.
And he did a great job of letting us know that he knew Tom Brady was that guy, but at the same time, relaying confidence in us that we could get the job done.
New England coach Bill Belichick was gracious and to the point in defeat.
They played better than we did today, so congratulations to the Seahawks, Belichick said. Pete, they did a great job. They outplayed us today, out-coached us. They were better than we were.
During a soggy halftime ceremony, the Seahawks retired the jersey of Hall of Fame defensive tackle Cortez Kennedy. Kennedys No. 96 now hangs in the east rafters of CenturyLink Field, along with Steve Largents 80, Walter Jones 71, and the No. 12 that honors the Seahawks fans.
After being taken with the third overall pick in the 1990 NFL draft, Kennedy made eight Pro Bowls in his 11 seasons with the Seahawks and was named the 1992 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, even though the Seahawks had a 2-14 mark that season.
In August, Kennedy was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, an honor that was commemorated Sunday when Steve Perry of the Hall of Fame gave Kennedy his ring.
Like I said in my Hall of Fame speech, its not all about me, its about the 12th Man the Seahawks fan, Kennedy said.
Doug Baldwin is back. After battling a hamstring injury in fall camp and a shoulder injury for the last few weeks, Seattles leading receiver last season is as healthy as ever and starting to contribute.
Baldwin caught just two passes in the game Sunday both in the first half.
But those two catches were big for the Seahawks.
With Seattle down 7-3 in the first quarter, quarterback Russell Wilson hit Baldwin on a deep post pattern for a 50-yard completion.
Four plays later, Wilson hit Baldwin again this time for a 24-yard touchdown to give Seattle a 10-3 lead.
Obviously, it would take a lot for Baldwin to match his 51 catches and 788 yards of last season. But thats not his biggest concern.
It just felt great to be out there and to compete and feel healthy, he said. Just being able to move my body and adjust my body in ways I normally can. Im not quite there yet. But Im close and today was evidence of that.
Carroll said cornerback Byron Maxwell re-injured his hamstring, defensive back Kam Chancellor suffered an elbow injury and offensive tackle Paul McQuistan had a knee issue. All three will be evaluated further today. Receiver Charly Martin, safety Winston Guy, cornerback Danny Gorrer, cornerback Jeremy Lane, defensive tackle Clinton McDonald, offensive lineman John Moffitt and defensive tackle Jaye Howard were Seattles inactive players for Sundays game. Rookie linebacker Bobby Wagner led Seattle in tackles with 14 combined. Chancellor finished with 11 tackles, and Brandon Mebane had seven. The Patriots did a nice job of bottling up Marshawn Lynch, limiting Seattles running back to 41 yards on 15 carries. Former Seahawks receiver Deion Branch finished with one catch for 5 yards in his return to Seattle. Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson has an 84.8 passer rating in the fourth quarter. The Patriots ran 85 plays to Seattles 55.
Staff writers Dave Boling and Ryan Divish contributed to this report.