Rocky Seto named assistant head coach/defense

The dominoes that were set in motion when defensive coordinator Dan Quinn left the Seahawks last week have resulted in Rocky Seto being promoted to assistant head coach/defense on Pete Carroll’s staff.

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The shuffling of the Seahawks' defensive coaching staff continued Tuesday when Rocky Seto was named assistant head coach/defense.

Seto's promotion from defensive passing game coordinator, the position he has held on Pete Carroll's staff the past three seasons, follows the elevation of Kris Richard from defensive backs coach to defensive coordinator on Monday.

All this movement followed defensive coordinator Dan Quinn being named head coach of the Atlanta Falcons last week and linebackers coach Ken Norton, Jr. being hired as the defensive coordinator of the Oakland Raiders over the weekend.

Seto, 38, joined Carroll's staff at the University of Southern California as a graduate assistant in 2001 and worked his way up to coaching the safeties (2003), linebackers (2004-05) and secondary (2006-08). He was named defensive coordinator/secondary in 2009 and then followed Carroll to Seattle in 2010.

During his time with the Seahawks, Seto has served as quality control/defense (2010), defensive backs/safeties (2011) and defensive passing game coordinator (2012-14).

"I think his style of teaching is very, very different from anybody in that building," All-Pro free safety Earl Thomas said the week of Super Bowl XLIX when asked about Seto. "I've never met a coach that shows examples from Animal Plant and tries to relate that to how we attack football.

"That's different."

Seto's organizational skills, on-field input and those unique teaching methods have been vital to the Seahawks leading the NFL in average points allowed the past three seasons and in average passing yards allowed the past two seasons.

"I watched him grow up in our system," Carroll said recently when asked about Seto's role in all the good things the Seahawks' defense has been able to accomplish. "He has become really the keeper of the records. He's got all the information. He knows everything we've ever done and how we've done it.

"He's a tremendous resource for us to always stay in touch with the principles and the philosophy and all that."

In this case, Carroll's "and all that" catchphrase goes beyond the obvious X's and O's.

"He's been a special confidant to me to maintain our language and our belief because he goes back the furthest with me," Carroll said. "He's a great friend. He's been a great coach for us. He's been a very integral part of everything we do."

And now, Seto will continue to do that – and more – with a new title.

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