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Bill Barnwell: Worst Coaching decision of the year goes to.....

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It may not be a popular opinion, but I don't see how people are giving more blame to Ron Rivera than Cam Newton for that play. The play actually worked until Newton---precariously handling the ball---fumbled away the first down.

People can believe all they want to about the play's importance to our season, but I say bullshit. If that play turned our entire season, then the team is (was) more weak-minded than I am thinking that they are. Psychological ramifications aside, the Mike Smith call was the most horrible call of the season, period.

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did the coaches know it was going to be pinned at the one? did they know that the STs unit wasn't going to choke like they had done quite frequently? did they know that the defense that had been giving it up all day was going to all of a sudden turn into a brick wall?

there were just too many things that could go wrong that had been going wrong all day and rivera made the mistake of trusting personnel groups that had proven themselves inadequate and untrustworthy. and he did it not because he believed in those guys, but because it was "textbook".

it was more likely that the offense would get one yard than it was that the defense and special teams would all do theirs. it is perceived that he chose the safer route, but it wasn't. it was the most reckless one because of who he had on the field, who they were playing against, where they were, and the overall situation and he chose that route only because "by the book".

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