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Pete Carroll lauds Geno Smith’s accountability but says Seahawks have to ‘help’ him

Baltimore’s Kyle Van Noy sacks Seattle quarterback Geno Smith during the second quarter of the Ravens’ 37-3 home win at M&T Bank Stadium on Sunday.  (Tribune News Service)
By Bob Condotta Seattle Times

SEATTLE – A day later, the thoughts of Seahawks coach Pete Carroll on Geno Smith’s culpability in Sunday’s 37-3 loss to the Baltimore Ravens hadn’t changed.

As he did in the moments after the game, Carroll again said the loss fell on everyone’s shoulders and not just those of Smith.

Smith played every snap of the game, and while the game was a lost cause by the last few series, and Seattle did substitute liberally on defense, Carroll said he never thought about putting in Drew Lock even at the end, leaving Smith and the starting offensive line in for every play.

“I wanted to get going,” he said. “I wanted to show that we could get the ball moving and start to make some progress. Thinking positively that we would be able to do that. Just wanted to have some success before the day was over.”

Smith had both an interception and a lost fumble in the second quarter as the Ravens jumped out to a 17-3 lead for his seventh and eighth turnovers in the past four games.

But Carroll said the interception on a throw to Tyler Lockett was the result of miscommunication and the fumble came on a play when Smith had the ball knocked out of his hands as he tried to throw.

In Carroll’s eyes, each play illustrates that while it’s Smith whose stats take the hit, he wasn’t solely to blame.

“We struggled across the board on offense so that everybody had some difficulties in this game,” he said. “It just added up to where the quarterback is in the middle of that as well.”

Carroll said he’d talked to Smith about quickly moving on from the loss, and said one thing he wants Smith to avoid is trying to do too much.

“One of the things that I want to help Geno with as much as I can is not over trying, pressing to make a play where he feels like he’s got to go above and beyond and find the throw that may not be there, and work too hard at it,” Carroll said. “And he believes in himself so there’s times as all great quarterbacks that think they can get it in there so they’ll take their shot at it.”

Smith was again hard on himself after the game, taking the blame for the interception and saying of the team’s overall offensive struggles, “I’ve got to figure out ways to be better and help out.”

Carroll said that Smith’s “consistent accountability is admirable” but reiterated he was far from alone in blame.

“We’ve got to help him, make sure we’re doing our part,” Carroll said.

RT Lucas should be back next week

As they first did in last week’s win over Cleveland, the Seahawks went with a rotation of Stone Forsythe and Jason Peters at right tackle to fill in for Abe Lucas.

While it seemed to work pretty well against the Browns, it got decidedly mixed results against the Ravens.

According to Pro Football Focus, the Seahawks allowed 17 hurries in 35 drop-backs with Forsythe leading the team with five and Peters giving up two. That came with Forsythe playing 25 pass-blocking snaps and Peters 10; Forsythe played 33 snaps overall and Peters 16.

Asked what he thought of the rotation, Carroll said, “I thought it was OK. We’re trying to get playing time for both guys, see how they are doing. We’re still working at it.”

The rotation may continue one more week. Peters can be elevated off the practice squad one more time before he would have to be signed to the 53 to continue to play.

But it’s possible Lucas could be back for the Nov. 19 game in Los Angeles against the Rams. He has been out since the opener against the Rams on Sept. 10 while dealing with a knee injury.

“Looks like Abe is going to be back at practice next week,” Carroll said of Lucas, who started 16 games at right tackle last season as a rookie after arriving as a third-round pick out of Washington State. “That’s what we’re looking at. So he’s really close right now. And there’s still some question whether we can get him out this week or not. But it seems like next week for sure we’ll get him out there, if not sooner.”

A Lucas return from injured reserve over the next week or two might finally allow the Seahawks to play with their full opening-day starting lineup on the line .

Injuries have led to Seattle starting seven alignments on the line in eight games and Carroll said again Monday that has caught up to the team some.

“Guys are still working together and still developing,” Carroll said.

Seahawks ‘got sloppy’ with tackling

Yep, the stats showed the Seahawks really did miss a lot of tackles Sunday as the Ravens rushed for 298 yards. According to Pro Football Focus, Seattle had 23 missed tackles after averaging roughly eight in the first seven games.

Jamal Adams led the way with three while Devon Witherspoon, Boye Mafe, Frank Clark and Jordyn Brooks each had two, according to PFF.

“As the game wore on, we got sloppy with our tackling, and we tackled poorly later on in the game,” Carroll said. “Kind of taking some shots instead of being really disciplined about the technique of it.”