Carroll still taking it one game at a time, all the way to the Seahawks’ record book

With Monday’s victory over the Vikings, Pete Carroll now has coached the Seahawks to more wins than any other head coach. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Pete Carroll is the winningest coach in Seahawks history.

He broke a tie with Mike Holmgren on Monday night when Seattle suffocated the Vikings, 21-7. It was Carroll’s 87th regular-season win with the franchise to go with 53 losses and one tie.

Holmgren led the team to an 86-74 record in his 10 seasons as Seahawks head coach.

Monday’s win was a fitting way for Carroll to claim the record.

“When I step away from it, it’s really about the defense tonight,” he said afterward. “I loved the way they played. They played so hard and so spirited.”

It’s always been about the defense for Carroll, who came up through the NFL coaching ranks as a defensive backs coach and defensive coordinator before getting his first head job.

Before his arrival, the Seahawks had never finished better than fifth in the NFL in scoring defense. In his nine years in Seattle, the Seahawks finished first in that category four years in a row (2012-15) and third in 2016. They are currently No. 6 this season with three games to go.

Carroll was happy with his defense Monday.

“Just some beautiful football,” he said. “Not the kind of football that everybody loves, but the kind of football that we love.”

This year’s coaching job may be one of his best. After turning over the defensive roster, replacing franchise legends Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor, Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril and Earl Thomas, not too many national pundits predicted success.

Carroll deferred credit to his partner in the front office.

“I’m proud to say that John Schneider is the all-time winningest general manager,” he said. “So, I think that should be really the focus. … I think it’s really cool that John’s the winningest GM in the history of the franchise.”

Schneider came to Seattle with Carroll and the two have worked together to shape the roster ever since. They built the team’s first Super Bowl winning team, and now they’ve rebuilt the team into a playoff contender.

They drafted Russell Wilson in 2012 and gave him the reins to the franchise right from the start.

Wilson, who moved pass Dave Krieg for most wins by a starting quarterback in team history earlier this season, said the Seahawks’ success this year has been a team effort.

“There’s just so many guys making plays and it’s just exciting to be a part of what we’re doing,” he said. “On the offensive side, on the defensive side, special teams. It’s a collective effort.”

Carroll praised the players as well, but he also warned against complacency. With the Seahawks a win away from clinching a playoff spot, he shifted focus to the game ahead.

“It’s available to us,” he said. “It’s there now. I’m really excited about that, but talk to me after we’ve accomplished something. We haven’t done nothing yet.”

Perhaps that will change Sunday in San Francisco. If the Seahawks make the postseason, it will be the seventh time Carroll has led them there.

That, too, would break a tie with Holmgren for another franchise record.

Seahawks all-time coaching records:

  • Pete Carroll (2010-current) 87-53-1
  • Mike Holmgren (1999-2008) 86-74
  • Chuck Knox (1983-91) 80-63
  • Jack Patera (1976-82) 35-59
  • Dennis Erickson (1995-98) 31-33
  • Tom Flores (1992-94) 14-34
  • Jim Mora (2009) 5-11
  • Mike McCormack (1982) 4-3