"I feel bad about this," Carroll told reporters after the 50-17 victory. "That was part of our game plan. It was something I could have called off and I didn’t. It was an automatic for us, and I didn’t do it. It happened. We’re trying to make first downs, so I let it go. It’s unfortunate that it comes across that we’re doing something wrong there. That’s my fault totally for not stopping it from happening."
This explanation holds up, in my view. The St. Louis Rams had one of these "automatic" fake calls in play against San Francisco in Week 10. Punter Johnny Hekker had the green light to throw the ball once the 49ers left a receiver uncovered on the perimeter. Hekker completed that pass from his own end zone.
According to Carroll, the Seahawks had a fake set up against the Bills if Buffalo showed Seattle a certain defensive look. When the Seahawks got that look, their players went with the fake. Carroll could have removed the fake as an option before the play, and in retrospect, that is what he said he should have done.
Reporters asked Bills coach Chan Gailey about the fake punt.
"No comment," Gailey replied.