Seattle Seahawks

Seahawks extend grinning, winning Pete Carroll as coach. Here’s how long

Last week, while the Seahawks were regrouping from a surprising defeat at San Francisco for a second try at clinching a playoff spot, Jody Allen and the very top of the franchise made a move.

The sister of the late Seahawks owner Paul Allen, now the team’s chair, sought to get coach Pete Carroll a two-year contract extension beyond his current deal that was to end after the 2019 season.

On Monday, at 1:08 p.m., to be exact, Carroll signed it.

Merry Christmas.

Not only are the Seahawks rolling on back into the playoffs, Carroll will be rolling on leading the franchise through the 2021 season.

The team announced on Monday a Christmas present, at least for those who like the most successful program in Seahawks history to remain intact: The 67-year-old Carroll signed that two-year extension to remain its coach and top football authority.

“We got it done last week, and wrapped it up today,” Carroll said Monday afternoon, breaking from a staff meeting with defensive coaches.

Russell Wilson was happy, too. The Seahawks’ franchise quarterback posted his approval of his coach’s new deal on Twitter. Wilson called it “well deserved” — and included fire emojis in his message.

Carroll is the oldest coach in the NFL. His new deal is worth “more than” $11 million per year, according to a report by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport citing a source.

Carroll was believed to be earning $8 million under his current deal, just behind New England’s Bill Belichick as the league’s highest-paid coach.

This will be Carroll’s fourth contract since he arrived in January 2010 to lead the franchise to its most successful decade in team history. He will be 70 years old when the new deal ends.

“The organization has been exceedingly good to me, throughout the whole time we’ve been here,” Carroll said. “And they’ve continued to take that position, and I couldn’t be happier.”

Carroll says he’s planning on coaching another five years. At least. That would take him to age 72.

Nothing currently around the Seahawks suggests that won’t happen.

“I’m working on fives,” he said.

“I’m in great shape,” he said, grinning.

“I’m counting on a five-year plan. That doesn’t have any statement on my contract. But it’s just kind of the way somebody taught me to look forward. And it helps.”

To clear up some questions about future ownership of the team, Jody Allen was conspicuous in being quoted by the team in its announcement of Carroll’s deal.

“I am excited to announce that we have extended head coach Pete Carroll through the 2021 season,” Allen, Seahawks chair and trustee of her brother’s Paul G. Allen Trust, said in a statement issued by the team. “This will continue the championship culture that we have created in Seattle.”

Jody Allen had been the vice-chair of Paul Allen’s First & Goal Inc., the company he founded to run the Seahawks. After her brother’s passing, she is now the Seahawks’ chair.

So, no, the team isn’t being sold.

Jody Allen is keeping the status quo. Carroll is operating on a daily basis as he has for years through team vice chair Bert Kolde, who had that same role when Paul Allen was owning the team.

The announcement came a day after Carroll extended his franchise-record for coaching wins with his 88th in the regular season, the 38-31 victory over Kansas City. It clinched the Seahawks’ sixth playoff appearance in seven years, and seventh postseason in the nine years Carroll and general manager John Schneider have been leading the franchise.

Schneider’s contract with the Seahawks runs through 2022, not 2021 as previously believed. Though Carroll’s new deal ends after 2021 that doesn’t mean the two won’t still be working together after that.

“We’ve come here to do this together,” Carroll said Monday. “He’s been a great partner. We are both pumped up about everything that’s coming. We love this team. We are excited about what’s happening with ownership.

“Really, it feels like, we are just getting started. ... I’m in really good shape and really excited about it.”

Carroll has nine other wins in the postseason for Seattle. That includes the Seahawks’ back-to-back Super Bowls and only Super Bowl victory, at the end of the 2013 season.

“So grateful to Jody and the organization,” Carroll said. “I love this team and couldn’t be more proud to represent the 12s.”

Gregg Bell is the Seahawks and NFL writer for The News Tribune. In January 2019 he was named the Washington state sportswriter of the year by the National Sports Media Association. He started covering the NFL in 2002 as the Oakland Raiders beat writer for The Sacramento Bee. The Ohio native began covering the Seahawks in their first Super Bowl season of 2005. In a prior life he graduated from West Point and served as a tactical intelligence officer in the U.S. Army, so he may ask you to drop and give him 10.
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