OAKLAND – A mistake-marred, penalty-filled, 10-point loss to the Oakland Raiders was not what Pete Carroll was looking for from his team in its preseason finale, but the Seahawks’ fifth-year coach did see some things he liked.
And it started with quarterback
“We’ve moved ahead,” Carroll said. “We’re better than we were in the past. And I think it’s the growth of the quarterback and his connection with all his guys.”
The loss dropped the Seahawks’ preseason record to 2-2, the same as in 2011 before they went 4-0 the past two summers.
But Carroll is a glass-half-full kind of coach, and that Wilson-led opening drive was overflowing with praise-worthy efforts that capped a strong preseason for the offense that will finally play an entire game in the Sept. 4 regular-season opener against the Green Bay Packers at CenturyLink Field.
“All in all, I think we’re ready to go,” Carroll said.
Even if it didn’t look that way as the Seahawks were penalized 12 times for 95 yards, fumbled a kickoff return to setup one of the Raiders’ touchdowns and allowed Carr to complete 11 of 13 passes for 143 yards and the three TDs.
The saving grace? Another impressive – if short – stint by the Wilson-led offense. He was 3 of 3 on the four-play drive, including a 25-yard TD pass to second-year tight end Luke Wilson.
The Wilson-led offense scored on each of its five first-half possessions against the Chicago Bears last week and its first four possessions against the San Diego Chargers the week before that.
“Russell had a phenomenal preseason statistically just in every way,” Carroll said.
So the first drive against the Raiders was a case of picking up where he had left off.
After that silver lining, however, it was pretty much a silver-and-black evening.
“We had a terrible time tonight,” Carroll said. “This game is not indicative, I hope, of how we’re going to play.”
Another positive was getting extra play time for left tackle
“That worked out well,” Carroll said.
But it wasn’t enough on this night, against this opponent.
The Raiders passed for 248 yards and four TDs, and ran for another 124 yards and another score. They converted seven of 13 third-down situations.
“I thought the Raiders played great tonight,” Carroll said. “They tore us up in every way. They did everything well. They just took it to us.”