Monday, December 20, 2010

When the Packers lost the game

Yes, the offensive lineman running for 71 yards without being touched was awful and embarrassing, but they lost the game here:

4-1-NE 1 (13:52) 2-M.Crosby 19 yard field goal is GOOD, Center-61-B.Goode, Holder-8-T.Masthay.

I hate 19 yard FGs. Unless you are trailing by 2 or less and time is running out, they're always a bad idea, but this was a particularly bad decision. I'll never understand why coaches do not think in terms of possessions. Being up by 7 is good. Being up by 9 or more is great. When your opponent needs two offensive possession to beat you instead of one, you are far more likely to win the game.

Being up by 10 on the Pats is simply far more valuable than being up by 6, and it was well worth the risk. Moreover, even if the Packers were stopped the Pats likely could not have gone the length of the field starting from the 1.

That was a terrible decision, and cost them the game as much as anything.


Jon said...

McCarthy is pretty bad but still might be above the median NFL coach! Who do you think are the good ones (not counting motivation, etc. just in terms of in-game decisions which are the easiest to judge them on).

My Tier 1 - Belicheck
Tier 2 - Mike Smith
Tier 3 - Sean Payton, Mike Tomlin
Tier 4 - John Harbaugh, Tony Sporano (a little unsure about these guys)

Everyone else either sucks, or sucks worse.

PaulNoonan said...

I basically agree with all of that, and I do think he's an above average coach. It's still infuriating to lose a game based on bad decision-making. I probably haven't seen enough of tier 4 to make an accurate judgment.

Everyone else seems bad.

E.S.K. said...

I don't see why you got infuriated about the game. In a few hours it will be rendered 100% meaningless.

Moral victories are atrocious things, but I do think this give the Packers confidence going into their final two games.

PaulNoonan said...

Because they should have won, and could have won simply by making better decision, even if they still dropped picks and let 350 pound men rumble 71 yards.

E.S.K. said...

Yeah, but they're just not that great of a football team. At some point, stupid, flukie, unlucky games are no longer stupid, flukey or unlucky. This team finds ways to lose close games. It's not just 4th quarter defensive collapses or a blatant PI with a minute left. Decisions throughout the game haunt this team to the bitter end.

They are pre-panties Nuke LaLoosh and until they figure out how to get out of their own way we kind of just have to roll with it.

$1 million talent with a $.10 brain but sadly, it's what we got. I'm hoping they can take some confidence out of this loss and move forward.

Your post is 100% right, but man, I just can't get worked up over the mental mistakes anymore.

TD said...

I agree completely. This was one of the most atrocious coaching decisions in some time, when you take everything into consideration.
On the road, up by 3, best offense in the NFL on the other sideline, 2 games out of the Division title with 3 games to play, etc etc etc. You already know you control your own destiny for the play-offs even if you lose. You HAVE to run the ball 3 times and score, or make them go at least 70 yards to get a game tying field goal, and 99.5 to take the lead. Mind numbingly stupid.

If you look at how the game unfolded it also made no sense. They start the game off with an onside kick ... a HUGE gamble given the field position they would have surrendered had they not gotten it ... but won't take the relatively safe risk associated with going for it on 4th and goal, with the lead, in the 4th quarter? With the way that the defense was playing at that particular point in the game, why would you NOT want them on the field to defend 99.5 yards of the field and a 3 point lead (in the event you failed), rather than taking the virtually meaningless 3 and then putting your kick coverage unit on the field to defend a 6 point lead?

It's Tuesday and I'm still having blood pressure control issues when I think back on that. It was a chicken shit call ... and I find it to be the most inexcusable of the season.

Jon said...

And yet it still pales to Tom Coughlin's stupidity earlier that afternoon (and Andy Reid's stupidity in the same game). Ah NFL coaches, is there anythig they can do?