Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said he would like to see his team show more explosion on the offensive side of the ball over the remaining nine games this season.
"We need to get out of what we've been in the last two weeks," Carroll said during his weekly Monday press conference at the Virginia Mason Athletic Center. "This is not the way we're going to play football and we'll fix this."
One solution could be increasing the workload in the backfield — the Seahawks currently average 25.1 attempts per game. Carroll said Christine Michael has played well on offense and he would like to build off the burst he's been able to display so far.
"We all feel like he's been very consistent," Carroll said of Michael. "He's looked explosive, he's made some good, special plays. The consistency of taking care of the football and all that kind of stuff has been excellent. We just want him to have more opportunities to get out in the open. The run he had a couple of games ago where he breaks it right off the bat … he's had a couple of chances like that that we want to come back to and give him those opportunities again to see if he can get loose"
As we saw Sunday in New Orleans, the return of rookie running back C.J. Prosise can help, too. On only 23 offensive snaps against the Saints, Prosise gained 23 yards on just four carries and hauled in four catches for 80 yards — including a big 43-yard reception from rookie Tanner McEvoy.
"I think we're scratching the surface a little bit," Carroll said of Prosise. "You saw him move around a little bit, you saw just some things with him. We really trust his athleticism. He has a lot of abilities, he has a lot of speed, he understands a lot of stuff. He can run routes and can come out of the backfield. He's a very exciting player and we're hoping that we can get him more involved.
"The first game was just kind of a blank," Carroll said of Prosise's return from injury last week against the Cardinals. "Then this thing, he had a chance to make some runs, he had a chance to catch the ball, make a big play, that was really exciting."
On the ground, the Seahawks only have two runs of 20-plus yards. They're averaging 3.2 yards per carry and rank 28th in rushing yards per game. Part of the reason why has had to do with injuries to Russell Wilson and Thomas Rawls, along with the shuffling of a new offensive line in 2016.
"We still feel like the potential is there to run," Carroll said. "We feel like we're more equipped than we were a year ago, we feel like we can be better, we think we can be more aggressive but there are some elements that are different in our run game this year than they were last year at this time. Part of it is that we have not allowed Russell to take off and run very much. He's been very effective for us over the years, so we've had to take care of him and that's just part of the way this season has been."
Carroll is optimistic that the rushing attack can change the offense over the next few games with Prosise becoming more involved, in addition to Wilson and Rawls — who ran "really well" on Monday — getting healthier.
"We need to dig in with the running game and we have not been able to get that done and it's frustrating to say that," Carroll said. "Other than a couple of games where we got out ahead and the game got out of hand, it hasn't gone the way that we wanted to. We're just going to keep plugging away. We're not stopping with anything that we believe in because we know the formula we want to play with … we're going to take I think a good step forward here in the next couple of weeks."
The Seattle Seahawks took on the New Orleans Saints at Mercedes-Benz Superdome on Sunday.