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There’s a perfectly charming reason Pete Carroll plays catch before every Seahawks game

SEATTLE, WA - DECEMBER 12:  Pete Carroll head coach of the Seattle Seahawks catches a ball before a game against the St. Louis Rams at CenturyLink Field December 12, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Jay Drowns/Getty Images)

SEATTLE, WA - DECEMBER 12: Pete Carroll head coach of the Seattle Seahawks catches a ball before a game against the St. Louis Rams at CenturyLink Field December 12, 2011 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Jay Drowns/Getty Images)

SEATTLE – Ever wondered why Pete Carroll plays catch on the field before every Seattle Seahawks game?

During his weekly exclusive interview with Q13 FOX’s Aaron Levine, the Seahawks’ coach explained how that ritual got started, as well as why he’s so excited about Germain Ifedi, why he loves the South Beach diet, and what the team will need to do if it’s windy during Sunday’s game.

Seattle’s game against the Atlanta Falcons kicks off at 1:25 p.m. on the home of the Seahawks, Q13 FOX. Stick around after the game for our Gameday postgame show, featuring exclusive interviews from players and the coaching staff.

The Falcons came straight to Seattle from Denver. Have you ever been part of a team that’s gone right to the next city, and prepared there all week long?

No, only bowl games, but not during the NFL season. I know it’s the way a lot of teams like to do it. We have our way of doing it and we stick to our stuff.

Have you had a chance to catch up with Dan Quinn this week?

No. He’s getting his team ready, and we’re getting our team ready, and with all due respect, we don’t need to talk this week.

Will you have a chance to catch up before the game tomorrow?

Sure, sure.

What characteristics do you think make him such a good head coach?

I think he’s just so consistent, and so true to who he is, unwavering character. And he’s fun. He loves the game, and likes to make it good for the players. I’m sure that they’re having a good time with their team and the way that they’re putting it together.

When he originally took that job, did you give him any advice that stands out?

I don’t know about advice, but if anything, it would be about being yourself. Be true to who you are, and don’t let anything change you. There’s a lot of forces that work on you, particularly when you’re getting started, and a lot of opinions, and people around the office and around the building and all that. And they’ve had their ways, so you gotta stick really true to who you are, and I know he’s done a good job of that.

Does it change anything this week, knowing that he knows some of your tendencies?

No, not at all!

Matt Ryan’s been on fire this year. What do you see from him specifically on film?

He’s been great. They’re just hitting it. They’re big-playing people – they’re the most explosive team in the league, the highest scoring team, because they’re just hitting it on all cylinders. I think Kyle Shanahan’s doing his job, and in year two those guys are really coming together. You can see the benefit of the continuity and all that. Calling a good game, and executing a good game, and really making it hard on people.

You love the competition. The whole idea of the top-ranked defense against the top-ranked offense this week. It doesn’t get any better than that, does it?

Not as far as the rankings are concerned. But it is a good matchup, and it’s one that we take very seriously, with great respect. They’re a fantastic football team, and they have great balance. Their runners can run it, and they’re committed to mixing it and all that, as well as going down field and getting it, so it poses a lot of problems for us. So it’ll be fun, it’ll be exciting to see how our guys do.

If it’s windy, how will that affect the game?

We gotta do a good job with that football, and I know they’ll be talking the same. It’s a good challenge. This game was always meant to be played in all elements, and this’ll be a good one. I hope it’s as crazy as it can get.

You got Germain Ifedi back for the first time against the Jets. Have you pictured the potential of this team when everybody is healthy? All the rookie class, and Tyler Locket back also?

Yeah, we’re getting closer. This week off helped us. Germain’s going to improve a great deal. He’s one game old – he’s just a pup, and missed a whole month in a row, which really was a factor. So hopefully when he gets a little bit more continuity, he’s going to improve like crazy. But we will – we’re going to get Nick Vannett back, and C.J. Prosise is just around the corner. It’s always good to get healthy, and hopefully we can hang on to that.

When did your pregame ritual of throwing the ball around start?

To me, my favorite part about playing football is playing catch. It always has been, so I try to play catch every chance I get. So it’s not going to be any different on gameday.

Our Twitter question this week: What is the value of a healthy diet for coaches? Do you have a healthy diet, and if so, what is it?

It is important. It’s important for the players, it’s important for everybody. We’re all performing to a certain extent, and we’ve got to take care of ourselves. There’s a lot of guys that, uh, aren’t doing a good diet. Fortunately, here we have a great following for the nutritionists, and we try to do well. I do diet. Every few months, I hit it and I do a little South Beach version and get rid of all that sugar that builds up. So it’s always worked good to keep me even. I’m in tune with trying to eat well, but I don’t always, just like everybody else.