Football Roundup

Some passing thoughts from this past Sunday’s football action:

-Obviously a big win for the Cowboys. I was hoping their D would perform better against the struggling Giants offense. They let them move the ball too easily, and would have been in much worse shape if not for a couple of red zone stops. The offense was good. Romo looked solid, if not stellar, which I liked. If he can help the Cowboys win even when he’s not looking like the best QB ever (because of playing against bad D) they ‘Boys are in good shape.

-I didn’t know that in Bill Parcells’s two SB winning season, he switched kickers mid-season in both. Thanks to Len Pasquarelli for that nugget. I like what that means.

-The clock management on both sides of the ball was pretty bad. I don’t know why the Giants left any time on the clock at the end of the game. And what bothers me even more, being a Cowboys fan, was why the ‘Boys called a timeout to stop the clock with 6 seconds left. A field goal takes 5 seconds. By experience (the same thing happened at the end of the first half, same mistake, twice in one game. Come on), and by rule (according to Troy Aikman, calling the game). So why stop the clock for a game-winning field goal, only to leave 1 second on the clock, and have to kick off? Why take that chance? Why not run it down to 4, then call timeout, and let the clock expire as the ball passes the uprights? And worse yet, what if you miss? Then there’s time for one play from scrimmage? Am I the only one that finds this ridiculous?

-Finally, I don’t think I can emphasize how terrible Rex Grossman has been lately. 6/19, 34 yards 3 ints. The Bears, even with their amazing D, can’t win with that kind of production from the QB spot. Maybe in the regular season, when they depend on their Defense to outscore their Offense, and they can expect crappy teams to turn the ball over and give them scoring opportunities, but that won’t happen in the playoffs. And before you go all “Trent Dilfer in 2000” on me, Grossman is playing a lot, a LOT, worse than Dilfer did that year.


11 responses to “Football Roundup

  1. Marion Barber (the third) is killing all of the value out of my man Julius Jones. Good thing I have LaDanian on my team too!

  2. About stopping the clock with 6 seconds left: I can’t imagine it always takes 5 seconds. A 20-yarder can’t take as long as a 46-yarder.

    Anyway, I agree that 6 seconds is probably too much time, but after you have Barber run up the middle and the clock is still running, you have all these players flailing their arms to call time out. Unfortunately, you may leave a little extra time on the clock but it’s not the end of the world.

    Just squib it and barring a miracle you should be fine.

    Was anyone else hoping for a crazy Gramatica celebration, only to have the entire Dallas team holding him down like they were trying to put him in a straight-jacket???

  3. It may not always take five seconds, but it never takes more.

    I’ll let Jerry Markbreit explain:

    The NFL has a special rule: No field-goal attempt can take more than five seconds off the clock, regardless of when it strikes something. If there are six seconds remaining in the game and a long field goal is attempted, there will be one second left on the clock by rule.

    A good coach, and a good clock manager should know this. He should also tell his team to let one guy call the time outs in a clearly scripted scenario: clock was stopped at :12, the play to run Barber was called with the intention of running it down. Part of the called play should have been, run the ball, run the clock to :04 and call timeout.

  4. I was shocked – watching the game online – to see the clock stopped at 1:42. I was wondering why the heck the Giants called timeout so close to the endzone with so much time left.

    In the same situation earlier in the day, my Browns wisely let the clock roll, and though they scored the touchdown pretty quickly, there were still just :45 or so on the clock. Even this was enough time for a KC fumble, a Browns INT, and one play by KC before overtime… but you can’t blame clock management for that.

  5. I didn’t see the game, but if it was only third down (or less) they may have called a timeout with 6 seconds left in case they botched the field goal attempt. This way, time would not expire and they would get another chance.

  6. It was 4th down. Third down play was the Barber running play. There was no conceiveable reason to leave the clock at :06.

    It was, therefore, “Inconceiveable!”

  7. “I switched the goblets!”

  8. The better question is why the giants didn’t call their timeouts after the cowboys ran second down (giants had 2 left). At that point, the cowboys were going to get a field goal attempt anyways, so at least you give yourself a chance to get the ball back with sometime left.

  9. According to AD, Len Pasquarelli’s point is misleading. With the Giants, Parcells had to replace injured kickers: Joe Cooper with Raul Alegre in 86 and Alegre with Matt Bahr in 90. With the Cowboys, by contrast, Parcells has been voluntarily CUTTING kickers.

    And in my opinion, any comparison between those Giant Supe teams and this Cowboys team is insulting.

    Moving on, I think all the hubbub regarding the Giants clock management at the end of the game is a bit overblown. I agree that they could have done without the Plaxico Burress timeout, but when you are trailing the game by a touchdown late, your number one priority has to be scoring a touchdown to get the game tied. And that means allowing yourself as many downs and time as possible in order to give yourself enough cracks at it in the event you need all of them. You can’t worry about bleeding the clock, like you can when you are ahead or tied, or even in position for a game tying FG. If you want to be a big-time team, score the TD, and put the game in the hands of your Defense and let them come up with a stop. (It also helps if your kicker can kick the ball off past the 10 yard line).

    And for all you non-Giant fans out there, and for you Giant fans such as myself in need of some comic relief, there’s this clever cartoon:

  10. Sorry – I threw an extra https in that link. Try this one: this one


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