Pete Carroll – Riverboat Gambler
That was the question Seattle Seahawks second year Head Coach was faced with 0:13 left in the 4th quarter down by 2 points in Sunday’s home game against the Atlanta Falcons.
This is about as close to being stuck between a rock and a hard place as it gets.
On one hand he can go for it on 4th with 8-yards to go. Two of the last three plays had been disaster with Sidney Rice getting called for a false start on 2nd and 10 and on 3rd and 8 the Falcons blitzed and Tarvaris Jackson had to basically throw the ball away.
On the other hand he could go for a 61-yard field goal. The longest field goal ever kicked at CenturyLink Field was a 58-yard attempt by the guy who holds the franchise record long kick at 58 yards (Josh Brown). Seahawks kicker Steven Hauschka had a career long 54-yard field goal in Relient Stadium on his first carreer attempt but only has one kick longer than 50-yards since.
These are the types of decisions that coaches have nightmares about. Neither choice has a very high chance of success yet no matter what he choses, unless it works, it will be viewed as the wrong choice.
I disagree, I think he made the right choice at the time.
If he goes for it and doesn’t make it the games over and sure he would hear a lot of questions about why he didn’t try a field goal but Tarvaris and the rest of the offense will spend the rest of the week being questioned about their failures and reading headlines about them just as the offense was starting to click and gain some confidence.
If he tries the field goal and Hauschka misses no one puts that on the kicker. Not only has Pete shouldered all the blame himself in the future when he needs to ask Steven to kick a 55-yard field goal in a pressure situation it’s not as big of a deal.
Hauschka knows his coach has confidence in him, and even though that wasn’t his best kick, had the attempt been from 6 less yards it would have probably been good.