Fox, Carroll not so different after all

Malcolmson was a student at USC when he decided, for an article, that he'd try out for the football team. It was supposed to be funny. He wasn't supposed to make the scout team, but he did. Then Carroll hired him as a blogger for a new website the coach was starting. Then Carroll took the job at Seattle, and he asked Malcolmson to come too, to be his right-hand man. He trusted him, and Carroll almost always goes with his gut.

"My story was so unique, and he just has an appreciation for people and stories that are kind of different," Malcolmson says. "He just connects and sees value in people that others don't see, I mean, from the most obvious, like a 5-foot-10 quarterback."

Malcolmson, of course, is referring to Russell Wilson, who was snubbed in the first two rounds of the 2012 NFL draft because of his size.

Malcolmson has a hundred stories of unusual jobs he has been asked to do over the past couple of years. Sunday was one of those stories. The Seahawks like to play basketball before their meetings, and just after the team sealed its Super Bowl berth, Malcolmson made plans to have a couple of hoops shipped to New Jersey. But they didn't arrive on Sunday, so he went to Secaucus, and was up until 1 a.m. assembling the hoop with one of the Seahawks' equipment guys.

"It never feels like work," Malcolmson says. "I'm just so fortunate. I get to do so many fun things."

JOHN FOX HAS WAY MORE SWAGGER THAN MOST PEOPLE REALIZE

If he trusted reporters more, they'd know how confident he is. In 2000, before the NFC Championship Game, former New York Giants general manager Ernie Accorsi purposely avoided Fox for a week. Accorsi was too nervous about the Giants' matchup with Minnesota's powerful offense. Fox, the Giants' defensive coordinator, finally ran into Accorsi a day or so before the game.

Fox didn't understand why he was so worried.

"Let me just tell you something," he told Accorsi. "We may just shut them out." That Sunday, the Giants faced the likes of Cris Carter, Randy Moss and Robert Smith. And New York crushed the Vikings 41-0.

"He wasn't going to tell the media that," Accorsi says. "I think he is protective, which is smart today. Ninety-nine percent of the coaches are going to say, 'Oh, my God, I hope we can stop the worst-case scenario.' He wasn't being a wise guy. He'd been preparing all week."

Eventually, after years of waiting, Fox was set to interview for his first head-coaching job when the Carolina Panthers came calling. He asked Accorsi to give him a mock interview.

Accorsi said sure, but wanted him to show up for it in a suit. Though he looked at his boss a little funny, he did show up the next day, spiffily dressed, and Accorsi grilled him.

The answer that impressed him most dealt with Fox's offensive philosophy. Many defensive coaches, he says, are one-dimensional and defer to whomever they'll hire as offensive coordinator.

"He knew exactly what kind of offense he wanted to run," Accorsi says. "He thought long and hard about how he was going to operate. I was impressed by that."

PETE CARROLL IS A REAL PERSON

He finds tiny movie theaters to watch flicks in the middle of the night.

One of the biggest things Carroll is looking forward to this weekend is meeting up with his grandkids in New York. He has two sons -- Brennan and Nathan -- and a daughter named Jaime. Nate, an assistant with the Seahawks, is the spitting image of his dad.

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