Pete Carroll spent the first few days after Seattle’s Super Bowl loss to New England taking responsibility in a variety of interviews, including one with Matt Lauer of NBC’s The Today Show, for the goal-line interception that cost the Seahawks an opportunity to repeat as champions. Carroll, though, will have to share the blame with Russell Wilson, who told the Players’ Tribune web site that the botched play was all his fault.
In a four-minute, 20-second video, Wilson said the interception is all on him and that he hopes to be remembered for something other than that play.
“One yard. I’d be lying if I said I haven’t been thinking about that one yard for the past 17 days,” Wilson said on the video. “Everyone wants to know how I feel. Well, it’s complicated. Walking off that field in Arizona and seeing disappointed Seahawks fans in the stands was anguish. How could I not feel like I let them down? I tried to be positive, but I’m not perfect.
“I have been away from the game for almost three weeks, trying to escape football and clear my mind. But the funny thing is, I’ve never felt hungrier to get in the weight room and the film room and keep pushing until we get to Super Bowl 50.
“How do I feel? I don’t know if I can fit it into a sound bite. I definitely couldn’t fit it into a 30-second Instagram video. So, after the Players’ Tribune roundtable event on Saturday, I had the camera crew stick around so I could talk it out. Sorry if it’s not perfect. There was no script here. I just wanted to talk directly to the 12s. This is for you.”
Facing second and one from the New England one-yard line, Wilson threw a slant pass to Ricardo Lockette. Reading Wilson’s throw perfectly, Malcolm Butler of the Patriots muscled his way past Lockette and swiped the ball, clinching New England’s 28-24 victory. Many blamed Seahawks coaches for throwing on second down, arguing that Marshawn Lynch should have been handed the ball.
“It hits me,” Wilson said. “It’s tough to deal with. It’s a tough feeling of losing. If anybody hates losing, I hate losing . . . me feeling like I didn’t make a play and knowing it’s over.
“The most important thing at quarterback, and a leader in general, is accountability. So what happened in Super Bowl 49, I take full responsibility for it,” said Wilson, who added that he looks forward to his next opportunity.
“The belief that I’m going to get there again and that we’re going to do it better than it’s ever been done is never going to change for me,” Wilson said. “I’m going to be the last guy to ever give up. I’m going to be the last guy to not take a risk.
“Through all the ups and downs and wondering what happened, I’m prepared for the next moment. In my mind, I believe I have a killer instinct and will keep doing everything I can to be successful.
“And there’s a difference between just being successful and being significant. My goal is to be significant. My goal is to make a difference, to do it better than anybody’s ever done it. Call me crazy. Call me insane. I don’t know, but I believe I’ll get there again.”
Wilson is due this off-season to receive one of the richest contracts in NFL history. General manager John Schneider, speaking at the NFL combine in Indianapolis Thursday, said “there is no timeline” for getting the deal done.