Thursday, October 05, 2006

Fourth and short

Go For It It's fourth and one with two minutes to go in fourth quarter. You have the ball on the Jacksonville 20. The game is tied. A field goal is a sure thing and you could leave it to your defense to close out the game. Your defense has played pretty well, but Byron Leftwich threw for over 250 yards and two TD passes. Your secondary is suspect. Orthodox thinking is to take the points; or, you could take the riskier option and go for first down. If you make it, you can kill the clock and go for a last second field goal to win. If you miss, Jacksonville is still deep in their own territory and would have to drive 60 yards in two minutes to set up a winning field goal.

You are Joe Gibbs. What do you do?

We know what happened. The Redskins kicked a field goal and the Jaguars drove down field and kicked the tying, could have been the winning, field goal with six seconds left. The New York Jets faced a similar dilemma in their game with the Colts. They were fourth and goal at the Indie two yard line in the third quarter. They went for it. The attempt failed, Pennington was intercepted, and the Jets later lost. Did they make the wrong call? Their decision is analyzed on TheFootballGuys discussion board. Events proved that Gibbs' decision to kick was a good one, but the discussion concluded that coach Mangini made the correct decision under the circumstance. The analysis can be found here. Warning! This discussion is not for the math-challenged.

Eagles Behaving Badly As if there weren't enough examples of the boors in silly Phily, The Eagles Fan Of The Game was cuffed and ejected from Lincoln Financial Field in the fourth quarter of the Monday night game. Unbelievable? Check out the story here. Thanks again to TheFootballGuys for pointing me to this one.

Just can't wait for Terrible Owens to return to Philadelphia with his little cowboy friends. The drama won't be on the field. It will be in the stands!

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