That’s pretty much what Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said during the 20 minutes he took questions after his team’s 34-12 loss to Cincinnati.
Carroll was not only talking about his team’s poor performance, but his curious choice of going for it on fourth-and-two from the 3-yard line with 14 seconds left.
The Seahawks ran Marshawn Lynch up the middle on an inside draw, and he got the first down, but fell a foot short of the end zone. Without a timeout, the Seahawks could not stop the clock and a minor scrum ensued as Seattle tried to lineup, without success, to run another play.
So Seattle went into halftime down 17-3 and nothing to show for a good drive to end the first half.
“We learned about what happens when a coach gets hormonal and tries to freakin’ jam it down their throat for the touchdown there right at the half,” Carroll said about the play. “That was a mistake. It would have been a good call if we made it. But we didn’t.”
Carroll admitted his choice factored into the game because the Seahawks would have been down 17-9 instead of 17-6 in the fourth quarter if they had kicked the short field goal, needing only one score to tie the game.
Carroll said he’s still learning how to balance his aggressive nature with making the proper call in the right situation.
“It’s a bit little tough, because I have an attitude and a personality about how I want to do it,” he said. “But as we’re developing as a team, we’re not quite capable to take advantage of that yet. I have a lot of times where I’ve been in that situation, and it’s worked out. And it hasn’t a couple times here. And I don’t mind the scrutiny. It is what it is. I’m not worried about it.”
Carroll praised the play of Tarvaris Jackson, who finished 21 of 40 for 323 yards and an interception.
Carroll said the plan was to start Charlie Whitehurst and to hold Jackson out for another week if possible. However, when Whitehurst struggled to begin the game, Carroll decided to get Jackson in there to get the offense going.
“He could have used another week,” Carroll said. “So in my mind I knew that he could play. I was going to see if Charlie could pull it together and get something going and help us out, but it just didn’t feel like we were moving anywhere.”
Jackson entered the game to cheers from the CenturyLink Field crowd with 10:41 left in the half and Seattle down 10-3. At that point, Seattle’s offense has managed just 56 total yards. But Marshawn Lynch promptly fumbled on the first play, with Gibril Wilson recovering the fumble dnd Cincinnati taking over at Seattle’s 31-yard line.
Carroll went on to heap praise on Jackson, talking about how much of a big-time competitor he is, and also talking about Jackson growing with the offensive line and the receivers as the future of this team.
Asked to clarify what he meant by future, Carroll said he was referring to later this season.
“I’m talking about right now,” Carroll said.
Carroll also talked about Seattle’s mental lapses in the kicking game again, something that the team struggled with in the season-opening loss at San Francisco.
Seattle allowed 249 return yards, including a 56-yard punt return for a touchdown by Brandon Tate, and a 63-yard punt return by Adam Jones that set up a 14-yard touchdown catch by Jerome Simpson.
“That shocks me with the way we’ve been playing and how we’ve been growing,” Carroll said. “I don’t know how that happened. But we’ll figure that out, too.”
Carroll confirmed that Mike Williams had a tight hamstring, and that he was concerned if he would be able to make it through the game. Ben Obomanu started in place of Williams, finishing with four catches for 107 yards.
Jackson said he came through the game okay.
“My adrenaline is still kind of flowing a little bit so it’s not as bad,” Jackson said. “It’s not really that sore or anything right now.”