Bill Barnwell: Worst Coaching decision of the year goes to.....
Posted 25 January 2013 - 10:23 AM
Ron Rivera, Carolina Panthers
It was a terrible process and an even worse outcome. Why on earth did Ron Rivera think that his $102.8 million backfield of Cam Newton, DeAngelo Williams, and Jonathan Stewart (let alone Mike Tolbert) couldn't pick up a half yard against the Falcons with a one-point lead and 1:44 left? They'd actually done it on third down, only for Newton to fumble backward after converting and fall on the ball short of the sticks again. They're now 34-for-41 (82.9 percent) converting runs on third- or fourth-and-1 into first downs since Rivera took over. Instead, Rivera punted, and while Carolina did manage to put the ball on the Atlanta 1-yard line, the Falcons drove 77 yards in 49 seconds and kicked the game-winning field goal with 10 seconds to spare. ESPN Stats & Information calculatedthat Rivera decreased his team's chances of winning by 26.1 percent by punting, and that's without adjusting for how good Carolina is in short yardage. Rivera could have not watched a single second of Atlanta film all week and it would have been less damaging to his team's chances of winning than punting in that situation.
Posted 25 January 2013 - 10:27 AM
Posted 25 January 2013 - 10:28 AM
Posted 25 January 2013 - 10:34 AM
you can't protect a lead by giving the other team the opportunity to score. we gave it to them. we invited them. we laid out the red carpet. all they needed to do was take us up on it, which they did...as did the other teams we allowed to have the ball in clutch time with a small lead.
Posted 25 January 2013 - 10:35 AM
Posted 25 January 2013 - 10:37 AM
That one play could have changed our entire season. I truly believe that.
As do I.
I'm still pissed.
Posted 25 January 2013 - 10:42 AM
In fairness, the Panthers were surprisingly less successful during 4th downs in 2012 than compared to 3rd down. Nonetheless, Barnwell, kinda cobbled the numbers together to make his argument stronger by including 3rd dwn conversions that the Panthers were very successful at. He didn't have to. You play to win, not to lose. You don't have to make apologies or skew the numbers for that (unless your team is just plain bad at 4th down conversions). It was still a bad decision by Rivera. It was only inches.
I actually thought the article was going to be about the "Worst Coach" In The NFL. And I wouldn't have been surprised if I saw Ron Rivera on or leading that list. LOL.