My wife and I were watching the post-game stuff on ESPN and I found it interesting that Seattle players praised Carroll's 'positive reinforcement' approach to coaching. I was thinking that it's likely that this mold of coaching could become the norm (or at least more successful) considering the typical makeup of kids in today's society. I think kids today are softer, find it harder to carry conversations with the influx of technology, and need their hand held longer than kids from previous generations. Tough love is not as tough, it can't be.
I've noticed that the Pats teams from the past several years (ever since we changed the guard from vets to younger guys) have come out tight in the playoffs. Maybe they were overly prepared? Maybe they were overly worked? I can point to a clip from the Football Life piece on Belichick where before the Ravens playoff game in 2009, he told the guys "one mistake, you make one mistake, and you'll have to know that it could end your team's season." I can also point to some interview clips from Brady where Brady basically says he can complete 49 out of 50 passes but Belichick will blast him in front of his teammates for missing on that 1 pass. I get the need for perfection but that may not resonate as well with the younger guys.
Belichick, to me, is still the greatest coach ever but I can see a changing of the guard in terms of coaching STYLE (not a specific coach like Harbaugh or Carroll, but a STYLE). It also seems more likely, to me, that Belichick would hang it up with Brady because whoever the new face of the team will be, not sure if he'll be willing to mold someone else because it would require him to completely re-think his philosophies and that's not easy for someone that old with the success he's sustained already.