A Look Back At Hyperventilating/Over-reactionary Monday….Did Jason Garrett Ice The Kicker?

Posted: December 7, 2011 in NFL

So Monday morning I had hyperventilating seals reading and emailing me on this blog!! Let me take the Dallas game for example – and it’s amazing, cause week to week, like Mark Sanchez wins again in the 4th quarter…I don’t have a single Sanchez bashing e-mail “where are you going Sanchez basher’s? Ya’ll running and hiddin? I gotta be here Monday mornings, showing my face and ranting” As I’ve said before, Sanchez has to do twice the lifting of Tebow…and get’s none of the credit. Tebow does half the lifting and gets all the credit. Mark Sanchez, it was his 11th 4th quarter comeback, he leads the NFL in the last 2 years, yet not a single pro-Sanchez email. Where did you all go?? I mean, you’re great when you’re right!! Where do you guys go when you’re wrong?

I felt the same way about Mark Sanchez last week when everybody buried him; I don’t feel one iota better or worse about Mark Sanchez today. I don’t feel one iota better or worse about Tim Tebow today; I don’t feel one iota different about the Dallas Cowboys today. But let’s talk specifically about the Dallas Cowboys. So let’s assume that Tony Romo – who is actually playing in the game and not sitting on a couch, sort of knows what’s going on and has a sense of the game. Romo, who was brilliant in the 4th quarter Sunday – not good, but brilliant! Against an 8 man pass rush, running for his life, because Arizona had 8 tackles for losses, 6 sacks and 6 other hurries. He’s using a back-up wide receiver –Miles Austin is still out, and has a young offensive line. So Tony Romo was brilliant in the 4th, leads them down to a 13-13 tie and then he leads them again, with a chance to win it.

He gets a first down – on a great throw that when you watch the replay, I still can’t figure how Tony Romo jammed and squeezed the ball in that little window…but he did! By and large, some of it was luck on Romo’s last 2 drives. I mean he was slinging stuff, tight windows, Cowboy receivers were making great catches…one of their receivers was on a reality show a year ago against a hyper aggressive Arizona defense that in the last month and a half has won 4 or 5 games, including against Philadelphia and now the Cowboys. They could’ve beaten Baltimore and have beaten the Rams twice. So Romo gets a first down, they have a 49 yard field goal with 27 seconds left. Pigs get fed, hogs get slaughtered…you think he should be calling time outs? If I’m Dallas…we’re on the road, my kicker has been the second best kicker in the league, he’s hit five 49 yarders or 48 yarders, two that are 50+ yards, has been nailing 55 and 58 yarders in pre-games, we’re in a dome stadium with no wind.

So I’m on the road…at home you go for the win, road you go for the ties…that’s always been the montra in the NFL. I have been facing an unreal pass rush for the entire game – 8 tackles for losses, 6 sacks, 6 other hurries and I have played brilliantly. A week ago, San Diego – like everybody wants…they did run one more play!!  Nope, lost yards and were then out of field goal range. So Tony Romo knows “I’ve got the second best kicker in the league, I’m on the road, I just got a first down, and we’ve got a 49 yarder…call a time out! I don’t want Patrick Peterson to get a kick-off return; I want to bleed this clock dry” so he doesn’t call a time out. But then they call one for the field goal. Pigs get fed, hogs get slaughtered! I can win the game…and then you people are killing Romo.

Then there is so much misinformation that now, you’re killing Jason Garrett “Well, he iced his own kicker…” no he didn’t!! He didn’t ice his own kicker – as Jason Garrett said later, “we were disorganized! The clock [you and I weren’t there] the game clock was whinnying down….8, 7, 6….he called a time out to give his rookie kicker a clean kick because the last thing he wanted to do – and think about this, is lose 5 yards to a delay of game. So Romo didn’t call a time out a Jason Garrett did for the exact same reason! Just don’t lose 5 yards on a player or a penalty…it killed San Diego last week. Dome stadium, on the road, get the hell out of town, get on a flight…see yah!! In a game where we’ve been losing yards for half the afternoon – and we’re still crushing them. Again, everybody is an expert after the fact…that kick goes through – and by the way, he wasn’t icing the kicker! If you watch the kick – which they initially made, only 3 people on the Cowboys special teams even moved!! Proving Jason Garrett right, that the team wasn’t ready.

Half the guys stood there and only 3 – the snapper, the holder and the kicker were actually in on it…it was disorganized!! Also, Jason Garrett is one of the few coaches in the league calling plays. So he’s calling plays, he’s running the time out’s – that is a lot of hats to wear late in the game. Most coaches do not call their offensive plays but Garrett does –he’s one of the few in the league. Belicheck doesn’t, Tomlin is not but they’re doing it in Dallas. Now, you can argue that he’s doing too much…but that’s a different argument. Right now, Jason calls them and Tony doesn’t – I would give them up to Tony, but that’s a separate argument. But after the game, they talked to Tony Romo and Jason Garrett. Now, this first quote here is Jason Garrett being asked a question: Why no time out after the reception, saying “We very well could’ve taken a time out there, but just…we felt like we were in a field goal range, we have yard lines that we use as guidelines before the game and we felt like we were in range at that point and Tony had them in a line for scrimmage quickly and we just went ahead and clocked it and used that as a time out”

So they were in range!! Dallas has 8 field goals of 40 or 49 yards this year, two are over 50. It was a Dome stadium, they were in range. Then he was asked: why did you call a time out when he was kicking? “Just because there was…we felt like the play clock was running down and just wanted to make sure that he had a real clean oppourtunity at it. It was at about 6 and we’re still getting settled in, so we banged the time out just to give an oppourtunity to get the snap, hold and kick as clean as possible” that was not icing!! That was not misinformation, he wasn’t icing the kicker! And when you watch the snap, the Cowboy players weren’t ready to go. The reward – getting 4 more yards, is not necessary for your kicker by the way, it doesn’t outweigh the risk s of losing yards, or getting picked, field goal early? You kick to Patrick Peterson. Tony Romo was asked: how come you didn’t call a time out? “For me, if it wouldn’t been a first down by 10 yards, I think you bang out a time out, but you know…I think by the same token, we’ve been in that situation before that where if it’s close, I don’t think you take it or you could just bang it…you know, if you call a time out and try to run it, you can be out of field goal range then too so… I think our kicker has made plenty of those”

Yet I’m hearing all of this “You could’ve gotten 10 more yards” pfft, do you know how few plays Dallas got 10 yards against Arizona on Sunday? Arizona, off a time out, would’ve put 8 in the box…8!! You would’ve kicked 8 field goal 40-49 yards. This was a dome stadium on the road…take it, get on a plane and leave town! I had no problem whatsoever with what Dallas did. So this idea that Jason Garrett was icing the game is misinformation!! He was not icing the kicker, Dallas was just simply unorganized, proven by what happened during the snap – 8 guys didn’t move!! And only 3 did.

So it was hyperventilating Monday…as far as Tebow goes and Sanchez, like I said in my previous rant…felt the same about Mark before the game as I felt after the game. Basically, Sanchez is doing more than Tebow…and getting none of the credit. Tebow is doing less and getting none of the credit…the truth is somewhere in between. Tebow did look comfortable on Sunday – it should be noted that the Vikings were missing 5 defensive backs on the inactive list, they were using special teamers at corners – who twice blew assignments and allowed Tim to just simply play pass and catch. But no doubt about it, Tim looked more comfortable than ever. But Sanchez has been doing this Tebow act for 2 years and gets absolutely no credit. I don’t flip flop on Sanchez!! I railed for like 10 minutes to some buddies last Friday on this….if you’re going to give Tebow the Messiah treatment on comebacks, then you have to like Sanchez because he’s doing the exact same thing, except even better numbers, has to make even more plays…it’s not fair. There is a disproportionate, an imbalance between our view on Sanchez and Tebow. Tebow is great and Sanchez is a bum…when Sanchez is not only doing the same, he’s doing it longer at an elevated level against better teams!!

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