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Eight things we learned from Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll at the 2015 NFL Scouting Combine

Key takeaways from Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll's Friday session with the media at the 2015 NFL Scouting Combine.

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.- Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll met with the media on Friday from inside Lucas Oil Stadium, headquarters of the 2015 NFL Scouting Combine.

In a series of availabilities with the press, Carroll provided plenty of insight on hot topics surrounding the Seahawks' offeseason.

Here's eight things we learned from Carroll at the combine:

1. Marshawn Lynch's Future

Carroll reiterated much of what Executive VP/General Manager relayed to the media on Thursday when it comes to the future of Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch. Seattle's leading rusher the past five seasons is under contract in 2015, but is said to be considering retirement.

"We have been in earnest a great deal of time now negotiating to get Marshawn back with us in every way that we can," said Carroll. "It's been an ongoing, long process. We've had big offers out there and continue to work with that and we're excited about the future.

"He's been an integral part of our program for five years and love the contribution that he's brought. He's been a great character in our program and all of that. So we're excited to move ahead. We would really like to move at that swiftly."

Carroll said the only situation he can see where Lynch doesn't come back is if he doesn't want to play.

"We've done everything we can do," said Carroll. "We've made significant strides in our work. This has been going on for a long time. Well before you guys knew it we were working hard at this and making sure that we were always preparing for the future with him.

"We've never thought of the future without him, so hopefully that will work out. We'll see if we can make that happen."

2. The Legion Of Boom's Health

Strong safety Kam Chancellor, who played Super Bowl XLIX against the New England Patriots with a torn MCL, and cornerback Richard Sherman, who finished the NFC Championship against the Green Bay Packers and went on to play in the Super Bowl after injuring his elbow, will be able to rehab their injuries without surgery, Carroll confirmed.

"Kam's going to be fine. No surgery," said Carroll. "Richard's going to be fine. No surgery."

It's good news for a Seattle secondary that on Thursday learned cornerback Jeremy Lane would need offseason surgery on his knee after injuring it on the same Super Bowl interception return that shattered his wrist. Carroll said cornerback Tharold Simon could also be a candidate for an offseason procedure.

"We also have to see what's going on with Tharold with his shoulder," he said. "So we'll see how that goes."

3. Zach Miller's Making Really Good Progress

Tight end Zach Miller, who the Seahawks placed on injured reserve this past November because of an ankle injury he suffered in Week 3, is "making really good progress" and should be in the mix to start next season.

"It was an intricate surgery that took place and they had to do some other work on it too to make sure it's right," said Carroll. "But the indication is it should be OK. It's a significant opportunity for us to get back a really good football player."

Miller has been the starter at tight end since he came to Seattle as a free agent ahead of the 2011 season. With his knowledge of coach Tom Cable's zone-blocking scheme and his sure hands in the passing game, Miller is considered the team's best all-around option at the position.

"You can imagine we didn't have him at all," Carroll said of life without Miller last season. "So we'll follow that very closely."

4. He'll Miss Coaching Against Jim Harbaugh

Jim Harbaugh accepted the head coaching position at the University of Michigan following the 2014 NFL season after spending the past four years as head coach of the San Francisco 49ers.

Carroll said he'll miss doing battle against his former NFC West rival who also was as a worthy opponent during their time together as coaches in the then Pac-10 conference, when Carroll was at USC and Harbaugh was at Stanford.

"I thought he was a great competitor," said Carroll. "I thought he did an incredible job of delivering his message in this game and he brought the best out in us in that. I think the world of his coaching ability and the job that he did. I like it when it's tough and he could make it that way. We had some great games and I wish him the best."

Carroll sees plenty of success coming for Harbaugh as he rejoins the collegiate coaching ranks at his alma-mater.

"I think he's going to kick butt at Michigan and do a great job," said Carroll. "Really anxious to watch it happen."

5. Kris Richard Will Call The Defense

With former Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn taking the head coaching job at the Atlanta Falcons, secondary coach Kris Richard was elevated to Quinn's coordinator role in Seattle. Carroll explained what went into that decision and touched on the role change for Rocky Seto, the team's defensive passing game coordinator who was promoted to assistant head coach/defense.

"Kris will call the defense," said Carroll. "Rocky's going to have a very significant role in all of the planning and all the work that we do. I'm really positioning these guys to do the things I think they're really well-suited to do and things that they've grown to become a part of. I know these guys so well. I know what they do and how they contribute.

"We've structured it similar to the other side of the ball where you see Cabes [Tom Cable] is assistant head coach and really running that running game and you see Darrell [Bevell] calling the plays and being the coordinator. It's very similar to that kind of format."

As defensive coordinator, Carroll said Richard will still be in charge of the team's defensive backs.

"He's the best secondary coach I've ever been around and done an incredible job with our guys," said Carroll. "He'll continue to make sure that stays at that level."

6. They're Hiring

With Richard and Seto's new roles, Quinn heading off to Atlanta, and the Seahawks' former linebackers coach Ken Norton Jr. accepting the defensive coordinator job at the Oakland Raiders, Carroll said Seattle is in the market to fill positions on its defensive coaching staff.

"We're still working on a couple spots on defense here at the combine as a matter of fact, so we're kind of swamped with it," he said. "But we wanted to really be open to a lot of people and give guys a chance to fight for a spot. So we have a couple spots depending on who the guys are and how we figure it out. It'll be determined a little bit down the road from now."

7. He Wasn't Surprised By Chris Matthews' Play In Super Bowl XLIX

Seahawks wide receiver Chris Matthews exploded in this month's Super Bowl against the Patriots, catching the first four balls of his NFL career for 109 yards and a touchdown.

Carroll said he wasn't surprised by the 6-foot-5, 218-pound wideout's breakout performance.

"I think it was a great opportunity for Chris to show and really a statement that he could make that he does belong," said Carroll. "We'll go back to camp with really high expectations of his role.

"But those guys are going to battle his tail off again," Carroll added of this year's battle at wide receiver. "It's going to be hard to make this team again and we'll see what happens. That's what competition's all about."

8. He Cares About Bill Belichick's Comments

In the aftermath of Super Bowl XLIX, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick came to coach Carroll's defense in an interview with WEEI radio. Belichick said criticism was unwarranted when it came the Seahawks' final offensive play call that saw Russell Wilson's pass intended for Ricardo Lockette get picked off at the goal line with less than 30 seconds to play.

"There has been a lot of criticism that I don't think is anywhere close to being deserved or founded," Belichick said at the time. "That football team is very good, very well-coached, and Pete does a great job.

"Malcolm [Butler] and Brandon [Browner], on that particular play, just made a great play. I think the criticism they've gotten for the game is totally out of line and by a lot of people who I don't think are anywhere near even qualified to be commenting on it."

On Friday at the combine, Carroll was asked if having Belichick's support in that situation was meaningful.

"It is important," said Carroll. "I care. We all care about that. Bill's an extraordinary coach. Anything he says people should listen to. In this case, he's just respecting coaching. He understands the game. He knows what was going on exactly."

Carroll said he's always held the Patriots' head coach in high regard.

"He knows," Carroll said. "He gets it. I have always respected the work that Bill has done and the accomplishments and the achievements. For him to take the moment to do that is very gracious of him."


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