On the heels of the team’s worst season in more than a decade, the Seattle Seahawks (7-10) Tuesday fired defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr. and defensive passing game coordinator Andre Curtis.

The team has already requested permission to speak with Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Ed Donatell, 64. He has coordinated and coached NFL secondaries for decades, a weak point for Seattle in recent years, and has a long history with head coach Pete Carroll.

The 55-year-old Norton was the team’s defensive coordinator for the past four seasons, and the 2021 campaign saw the Seahawks finish fifth worst in yards allowed (379.1 per game) and tied for 11th best in points allowed (21.53). In his four seasons, Seattle ranked 11th, 22nd, 15th and tied for 11th in points allowed; the team was 16th, 26th, 22nd and 28th in yards allowed.

A former Pro Bowl linebacker, Norton played for Carroll in 1994 and 1995 when the latter was the 49ers defensive coordinator. Also, he coached under Carroll for 15 of the previous 18 seasons dating to their time together at USC.


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This year’s 10 losses were the team’s most since 2009—the year before Carroll and GM John Schneider arrived. The 2021 team allowed at least 450 yards in four straight games (2 through 5), a franchise record and tied for the longest streak in NFL history.

“Defensively, we didn’t start fast enough in this season again,” Carroll said a day after the season finale. “That’s two times in a row we didn’t start fast enough, and we found ourselves and put up some good numbers that indicate how you’re playing. Just all of that just didn’t happen soon enough.”

The 2020 team allowed the most passing yards through nine games in league history and topped the previous mark in only eight games. It allowed the fewest points in the NFL over the final seven weeks of that season.

Curtis joined Carroll’s staff in 2015 as an assistant secondary coach in charge of safeties and was elevated to defensive passing game coordinator in 2018.

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