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Responding to Seth

Posted By: Paul Weaver
Date: Tuesday, 20 January 2015, at 12:32 a.m.

In Response To: Green Bay-How Big a Blunder?-OT (Seth)

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/05/upshot/4th-down-when-to-go-for-it-and-why.html?_r=0&abt=0002&abg=1 This link gives a cool chart showing when to punt, kick a field goal or go for the first down.

Seth wrote, "I found it quite unbelievable that Green Bay chose to kick field goals from within the 1 yard early in the game..."

Not at all unbelievable to me, because it is a very common occurance. Many college and pro football coaches earning multi-million dollar salaries have routinely for decades done a lot of things that give up even more equity than this. For example, they make very stupid clock management decisions near the end of the game. They like to call a time-out with 2:10 to go, which saves them only ten seconds because of the two-minute warning. If they called the time-out at a more opportune time, it would save them 40 seconds instead of 10.

Last weekend, as time was running out, Denver's running backs fought for a few extra yards and stayed in bounds in the process, keeping the clock running, when they could have gone out of bounds and stopped the clock. Very poor coaching. At this stage in the game, saving time is much more important than gaining a few extra yards, provided you have already made the first down.

A few coaches are learning that it is right to go for it on fourth down far more often than old-time coaches ever did. As younger coaches replace older ones, in time, more coaches will make better decisions on fourth down. Currently, most announcers and fans are as clueless as the coaches. I hope they never figure it out because it makes me feel so cool to believe that I know so much more than they do about such things. Also, it gives us something to talk about, since very few interesting positions appear here anymore.

Just in case anyone wants an interesting position, check out what appears below. Let's make it a money game and assume the cube is in the center. Now what is the cube action after Blue's best plays?

White is Arum

score: 0
pip: 137
9 point match
pip: 196
score: 3

Blue is allwind
Blue to play 44

eXtreme Gammon Version: 2.10

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