Gibbs joins Carroll's staff

Updated: January 13, 2010, 1:18 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

New Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll has hired Alex Gibbs to join the team as an assistant head coach.

Gibbs would oversee Seattle's offensive line zone run-block system that will be compatible with the scheme that will be coordinated by Jeremy Bates.

Gibbs confirmed the hiring to KRIV-TV in Houston.

"I know I am going to be coaching the offensive line for Seattle," Gibbs told KRIV. "Other than that I don't know anything else. If I'm the assistant head coach fine. If I'm not, fine. I know I am going to coach the offensive line."

Gibbs has been serving that current position with the Houston Texans. Gibbs is among the most reputable line coaches in NFL history.

Gibbs, who joined the Texans in 2008, began coaching in the league with Denver from 1984-87. He assisted with Oakland (1988-89), San Diego (1990-91), Indianapolis (1992) and Kansas City (1993-94) before returning to the Broncos for his greatest successes, from 1995-2003. He won consecutive Super Bowl championships in 1998 and '99.

Terrell Davis was the NFL MVP in 1998, rushing for 2,008 yards and 21 touchdowns inside Gibbs' blocking schemes.

Gibbs told the station Carroll brought him to USC to be a consultant in 2002.

"After Pete's first year at USC he was not happy with the direction of his offense," Gibbs said to the Houston station. "He liked what we were doing at Denver when I was a part-time coach there. So I helped him after his first year at USC. I helped coach the coaches at USC. We coached off of film, not the field. I didn't work with any players."

Jim Mora, whom Seattle fired on Friday to clear the way for Carroll's return to the NFL, hired Gibbs on his first coaching staff in Atlanta in 2004. Gibbs left when Mora was fired by the Falcons following the 2006 season. He then spent two seasons out of the league before joining the Texans.

This season, Mora brought his former offensive coordinator with the Falcons, Greg Knapp, to Seattle to install Gibbs' blocking system. That failed. Seattle was 26th in the league in rushing in 2009, averaging fewer than 98 yards per game.

Now Carroll is replacing the disciple with the guru.

"We have to run the football to be successful in our division first, and then in the NFL. You have to," Carroll said, during a rambling, excited opening monologue of 11 minutes, 42 seconds that began his introductory news conference at Seahawks headquarters. "It will affect everything that follows. It'll affect defense. It'll affect our passing game. It'll help our quarterback.

"It'll give us the kind of mindset in the approach that we all love, to back when we follow this game of football. So I'm really excited about that."

USC offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates is also coming with Carroll to Seattle, presumably to fill the same role with the Seahawks. Trojans linebackers coach Ken Norton Jr. and offensive line coach Pat Ruel are also expected to follow their old boss to the Northwest.

Carroll, who is also interviewing general manager candidates for the Seahawks this week, said he will have announcements on his staff in the coming days.

Information from ESPN senior NFL analyst Chris Mortensen and The Associated Press was used in this report.

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