Pete Carroll announced his starting quarterback decision to the entire team in the locker room after Friday night’s final preseason game. He didn’t need to tell anyone.
It was obvious to everyone that Gene Smith would start Week 1.
Drew Lock didn’t do enough to win Smith’s job, who became the favorite to start the moment he re-signed with the Seahawks on April 19. Lock threw three interceptions and one touchdown in his 56 snaps against the Cowboys.
“He can play,” Carroll said. “I have no question that he can play. I really don’t. He has all the athleticism. He has the arm strength. He has arm talent. He has creativity about him. All of that. I think he’s going to be a fantasy football player soon, so it’s just a matter of him just not having enough time to beat a guy who knew exactly what he was doing and who just stuck with it and really just won the job because of his consistency and really his efficiency.”
It marks the second consecutive summer that Lock has lost the starting job. Teddy Bridgewater beat him out in Denver during training camp a year ago, and the Broncos traded him to the Seahawks after acquiring. Russell Wilson.
“As a competitor, you’re always disappointed, and I was disappointed,” Lock said. “You want to be out there. You want to play with those guys. You want to be able to step on the field and show that you can do it. Yes, you’re disappointed, but now it’s my job to have his back and be the best teammate I can be. I have to go out every day and find ways to make this team better and make myself better. I must strive to improve every day. I know I won’t take the reps, but there are many ways you can improve.
“I learned a lot about what to do last year in this situation and how to be ready for any opportunity I get. I just need to get better every day.”
Smith took most of the first-team reps during the offseason program, training camp and started all three preseason games. Lock was scheduled to start the second preseason game but tested positive for COVID-19 two days before the game.
Lock said his second bout with COVID “kicked my ass a little bit,” but he refused to use that as an excuse for how he played Friday night or for losing the quarterback battle.
“The easy answer is any time you miss a game, it sets you back whether its preseason or regular season,” Lock said. “The Raiders, obviously, I was very disappointed that I didn’t get to play in that game, but I came out in practice this week a lot better, and I had a chance.”
In two preseason games, Lock went 24-of-39 for 273 yards with three touchdowns and three interceptions. He also lost a fumble.