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OT How bad was this play call?

Posted By: Joe Russell
Date: Tuesday, 21 October 2014, at 7:27 a.m.

With the Steelers leading 27-16 on the Houston 27, facing 2nd and 9,4:00 minutes to go in the 4th quarter, and with Houston out of timeouts, Roethlisberger unleashed a pass for the end zone. It was incomplete, taking little time off the clock. I think it was one of the dumbest plays I have seen: (1)most importantly, they could have run the ball taking another 40 or more seconds off the clock. Another run on 3rd down would have taken the clock down to 2:20 minutes, after which the game would be practically over, if the Steelers made a first down, or the Steelers could attempt a field goal if they did not. A field goal would give them a 2 touchdown cushion and force Houston to score two TD's in the last 2:20, with no timeouts,just to tie the game; (2)It was a dangerous pass and could have been intercepted.

As it played out, the 40+ seconds nearly came home to haunt them, as Houston got the ball with 3:04 left, trailing 30-16 and scored a TD with 1:31 left. They nearly recovered the onside kick, which would have given them a real chance, with 1:26 to go.

I think if Roethlisberger's pass would have been completed 20% of the time for a TD and never intercepted, it still would have been right to run the ball. Considering the pass could have been intercepted, it was even more ludicrous to attempt that type of pass.

I wonder what percent of the time the pass would have to be completed to be correct, assuming a 5% interception rate, which seems fair.

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