Super Bowl XLVIII: Pete Carroll media session transcript, 1/26/14

Elsa

(on not having any players on the roster with Super Bowl experience whether he gave them advice on the week ahead) "First off, I would like to correct you, Ricardo Lockette was at last year's Super Bowl. We have heaps of experience. There is a lot of stuff in traveling here that we have to be aware of. It's a long trip for us, when we're staying here for the whole week. There are a lot of things going on. We have a tremendous support staff that will keep us on track with all of the logistics and all that, but basically we have to stay focused on the football. There's a lot happening and it's a very exciting time for everyone. The conversation is ongoing about staying true to what we're doing and staying true to ourselves as we prepare for this."

(on how a player like WR Doug Baldwin can go undrafted and what he has meant to the team) "He's one of many guys that make it in the league that aren't drafted. Sometimes it's hard to measure the competiveness and the heart of a guy, but Doug Baldwin is an extraordinary competitor. He's as tough as you could ever want a kid to be. He has a big chip on his shoulder and he proves it every time he goes on the practice field or on the game field. He's a fantastic performer and a come-through guy for us. We had known him in college and played against him and appreciated his work. The fact that he was sitting there and we had the chance to get him was very special for us, because we knew we had a good football player coming in."

(on practice plan for the week and how often practices will be held outdoors) "We're going to have a normal week as best as we can - with the media events we have to take care of in between our day. The rest of it, the availability of the fields, we're at the Giants' facility, we'll find out. I understand there's snow on the field and they're somewhat frozen, so we could likely be indoors for most of the week. As we always do, we'll figure that out on a day-to-day basis. We like to get out when we can. We'll have to see if it's available to us."

(on how much of a resource linebackers' coach Ken Norton has been) "Kenny Norton, as far as I know, is the only player in history to win three Super Bowls in a row. He's always been a guy that's been a resource to us as we've tried to understand what it takes to be a championship program, when we were back at SC (University of Southern California) and here too. He's a very unique coach and a unique individual that meant a lot to those teams. He was right in the middle of all of it that was happening. He's always been a great resource for us. Specifically this week, we've used the few guys that we have that have spoken, Ricardo Lockette has not made a presentation to the club yet. There have been some phone calls. A lot of our guys have talked around to make sure that we're getting all the information that we can so that we can make good decisions. It seems like, from the input that we've received, that we're on track with what we're trying to do and the expectations of how we'll get through the week and how it will all work out for us. We feel very comfortable with it. I don't really feel like we have to change a whole lot. I think our system is pretty intact and we're going to try to make sure we maintain that throughout the week."

(on whether he is surprised about QB Russell Wilson's composure) "We've never seen anything from Russell that wasn't a consistent, direction, support, mindset, character, work habits; he's never changed at all. Nothing's ever changed. The way we deal with him has been very consistent because he's been so rock solid consistent. He's ready for this opportunity. He's been readying himself throughout his playing career in all sports. He's got a great savvy about him and I think he's going to continue to show that. I don't expect anything to change on game day or in preparation. He's shown us no reason to think anything but that."

(on the experience leaving Seattle) "We had an extraordinary sendoff. The 12s were out there in full force. There were a number of settings from the little trip we take from the V-Mac to the airport. When we got down to the last stretch, there were thousands of people lining the streets. The bus could (only) go two miles an hour because they had swarmed into the streets. It was just enough room for the bus. It was really fun to see. They weren't just waving; they were jumping up and down and cheering, just like the 12s do. Our following was well represented today. It was extraordinary fun for everyone to see that. Everyone had a blast. They pounded on the bus and the whole thing. It was very collegiate like in a sense and it was really cool."

(on the challenge Seattle's defense faces going against Denver's offense) "It's historically, as hard as it gets. It can't get any tougher. They've done everything - broken every major record in the throwing game, points and everything. Peyton's (Manning) been extraordinary. He's had the year that everyone would dream to have. People couldn't even dream to have the year that Peyton's had before this season with all the numbers. We're up against it. They don't just throw the football ball. They do run the ball. They ran the ball well in games they needed to down the stretch. It's an extraordinary challenge and we know we have a good defense and good guys that can play over there; they understand what we want to get done and all. We're going to see how this matchup goes. They have to play us too. We'll see how that works out. It makes for a great challenge for the coaching staff trying to get prepared, the game plan and of course come game day when the players take care of it. They will be checked out. It's an amazing challenge for us."

(on whether he thought about his time as head coach of the Jets on the plane ride in) "No, not then, but I have thought about it quite a bit. It has come up in the week's preparation already. I've always loved playing in New York. I loved the fact that I had a chance to be here for five years. To have a chance to be a head coach in New York is an extraordinary honor because of the history and the following and all that goes along with that. Unfortunately it didn't last very long, but it still was a great experience and I remember it well. I'm really proud to come back here and coach in a game like this, this status, in places we once lived and worked. It's a special honor to do that."

(on who he has leaned on in regards to gaining insight into Super Bowl week) "I'm not going to tell you who I leaned on, but I did. I had some very important phone calls and conversations with people who know what this is all about. I don't need to point out who it is, but it was important to me. I learned some good things and we got validated on what we're doing, the system and what we can expect and all of that. Hopefully, it'll all weigh in and help us out."

(on whether the fake-spike game in 1994 was beginning of the end of his time with the New York Jets) "It didn't have to be. When you look back on it that's what you would point to because we lost four games after that as well. There was a time in that game when we were ahead and doing great and it just kind of went south on us. That play has been a pretty famous play and I'm glad for Dan (Marino). That's the only guy I'm glad for, that he pulled it off. It was a moment when things turned. It didn't feel like it turned. We went up to New England, tried to win a game up there and the next couple of weeks we just couldn't get it right. But it did show you how fine the balance was. We were playing for first place, I believe, in Miami at the time. I think we were both 6-5, or something like that, and it could have been entirely different had we just hung on and won that game. It's one of the seasons I recall that we didn't finish very well and we've gotten a little better at that in years since then."

(on keeping this week from becoming bigger than the game) "It's really important that we've had a longstanding process to deal with the biggest occurrences we can deal with. If we just started talking about it this week and tried to figure it out, I don't think we'd have a chance. But we've been preparing to be a championship team all along. We've been prepared to have the kinds of expectations, to live up to the standards that we operate with on a daily basis in this season's case. I think that our mentality is strong and we understand about what it takes to perform in a game of this kind of magnitude. Every game we've played has been one as big as we possibly could have made it. We continue to talk that way where they continue to have those kinds of expectations and we don't plan on that changing. They know the language. They know what I'm going to tell them. They know how preparation is going to go throughout the week as we get through the process, and hopefully we'll maintain that mentality that allows us to play like we're capable of. That's all we're trying to do and we're not going to try to live up to the moment. We're not going to try to elevate to this wonderful city that we're in. We're going to try to do the things we know how to do and count on that to get the job done. There's some confidence that comes along with that, that you know we don't have to do anything different to play really well, and if it's good enough to beat the Denver Broncos, we'll be in pretty good shape after this week."

(on guarding against a young team having a sense of accomplishment in getting to the Super Bowl) "That's an issue that you deal with. They feel like, ‘okay, we've got here, and that's all we needed to get done,' or just a sense of relief that you've arrived here. We've had some great matchups along the schedule and there was none bigger than the San Francisco matchup with everything at stake and all that. What I think is that this team, even though we're young, they've got a mature perspective on what it takes to perform really well and that's what we're relying on. We've never talked like all we wanted to do was get here. We've never talked about just getting a ring or getting to the Super Bowl. That's never been our conversation. We've never even talked about getting to the Super Bowl to tell you the truth. We just talk about playing really well, week in and week out. I think there's a mentality that goes along with that that should keep us on track. I'm counting on it. We'll find out. We won't know until we play - we never do - and that will be the deciding factor, if we can stay balanced as we go through it. I think we will and I don't think there's any reason to believe otherwise."

(on being reminded that the "New York Super Bowl" is being played in New Jersey) "I gotcha. You're right. That's my bad. I'm talking to a bunch of people on the West Coast who don't care about that but you're right. It's great to be here and we're going to be playing in New Jersey as well. Even when you're at the Jets, we were the New York Jets but we were playing in New Jersey so I understand. I appreciate that. I'm sorry I didn't straighten that out for you."

(on his first impression of being at the Super Bowl) "It reminds me of the major bowl games and the things that we've been through. It's extraordinarily fun to be here. It's so much fun for our guys to be a part of this and all that. We'll learn as we go through this week that this is what it's all about, but we're well aware that we just crossed the country to play in the biggest football game you can play in and all that follows that. We're going to just take it in stride. I feel like that's kind of what I'm doing right now, is taking the next step - and we've had a lot of major steps here during the week - but it's pretty darn impressive. It's darn impressive. We get off the plane and there's a whole bank of people just filming us walking off the plane. It's not that exciting, but somebody cared. It's fun."

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