Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Will Belichick lose his Mensa membership

Bob Young of the Arizona Republic thinks so.


Blue Devil Knight said...

How many of these Monday morning quarterbacks have taken an NFL team to the Super Bowl four times in the last nine years? What was the Cardinals record last year? How did they do against the Patriots' second string QB?

Speaking of too many variables to make an intelligent decision, who had access to more relevant variables, those watching on TV or the head coach?

Wasting time outs, bad call yes. But to question Belichick's overall genius as a coach? Silly.

I don't recall, but how'd the Cardinals fare last year against the Patriots' second-string quarterback Cassel? Probably pretty well, given that the Patriots coach is such an imbecile.I think the score was 47-7, must have been a great day for the Cardinals.


Victor Reppert said...

With a first down, the game is effectively in the hands of the Patriots. At a critical point in yesterday's game, the Cardinals went for it on fourth down and scored a touchdown. Had that play failed, and Seattle recaptured their momentum and won the game, the Cardinals' coaches would have been criticized.

Bob Young does not represent the Cardinals. Ken Whisenhunt, who does, refused to criticize Belichick's decision. It is interesting that this writer is actually soft in his criticism of the fourth down gamble, and goes harder on the pass play on the previous down.

Genius, or even high performance level that doesn't rise to the level of genius, is inconsistent in any event.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Just so my cards are on the table, I am a theist, and His name is Belichick.

No offense to Commandment One.

Victor Reppert said...

You can't argue with rings. The ongoing saga of the Patriots vs. Manning and Manning is one of the interesting long-term stories in the NFL.

Blue Devil Knight said...

Victor that last comment: ad for escort service in London.

Victor Reppert said...

BDK: s from an escort service in London. It is no more. It is an ex-comment.

The loss to Cassel's Patriots as the worst of about five bad regular-season losses that got the Cardinals identified by pundits as the worst playoff team in the history of the NFL. The got control of their division by four games and then had no idea what to do with it after that before the playoffs. Any Arizona fan who thought beforehand that the Cardinals would get to the Super Bowl had to be using mind-altering drugs, probably large amounts of alcohol. We pretty much say Whisenhunt is in stage two of building a winner, not stage five.

Would you have punted? I found the discussion of the decision on, here.

Blue Devil Knight said...

He made the right decision, it is pretty clear from the statistics. That said, I would have punted because my mind is puny, emotional, and faith-based in comparison to his.

Victor Reppert said...

In fact there is a courage factor here; he is willing to take flack from the media, and I even saw someone on the combox of recommending his dismissal. No kidding.

Robert said...

What are you guys talking about? :-)

He **is** a football genius.

I think his fourth down move made a lot of sense in the context. You've got Brady possibly the best clutch quarterback in the league, you have been dominating the game all game long on offense (what if they had not fumbled at the goal line earlier, they would have been up by 17!), you've got Moss who is also one of the great clutch players, you are playing a Colts defense depleted in the secondary due to injuries, you need only two yards to lock things up, you have used your time outs already (perhaps they did not use them wisely but the fact was, when that play occurred they had no time outs so that fact had to be factored into their thinking) so you really want to run out the clock at this point, etc. etc. The receiver did in fact make the first down but supposedly bobbled the ball and so his forward progress did not count. I never saw a good replay showing that.

Even if we grant that it was a mistake, Belichick is still a genius. I love the Patriots, not because of any one player but to see football intelligence in action. I used to play linebacker myself and have played football for many years and Belichick is totally a genius in football. What I love to watch each game particularly as a former defensive player is how Belichick devises plans that always seem to neutralize the best offensive weapon the other team has. He forces you to beat him with something other than your best offensive weapons. That is genius. I guess only someone who has played the game can properly appreciate that kind of thing. And watching the Patriots, every game you see something where you think: "Wow that was great thinking there!" So having seen him do so over and over again, I am not going to let one decision mar the rest of what he has done (or will do).

Have you guys read the book about him? I like the strategies it reveals that he came up with (example when playing the Rams in the Super bowl when they had the high powered offense with Warner and these incredibly fast receivers, Belichick in practice had the players imitating the Rams receivers starting two yards ahead of the line of scrimmage so the defensive backs could get used to the speed of the Rams receivers coming at them, just a little move, but it took intelligence to come up with that kind of thing! And they “upset” the Rams that year).


Victor Reppert said...

Belichick can keep his Mensa card. The funny thing was that when NE had that big lead, I said "Peyton Manning is looking like an ordinary quarterback." Then all hell broke loose.

Victor Reppert said...

The easiest way to explain Belichick's decision is to imagine it as a red-zone play. Although it occurred in his own territory, the game is over if the play succeeds. With most plays in that part of the field, it's not worth it to go on fourth down because the all you get is a first down. Here, you don't score, but you win the game, which is better than scoring.

Robert said...

Hello Victor,

"The easiest way to explain Belichick's decision is to imagine it as a red-zone play. Although it occurred in his own territory, the game is over if the play succeeds. . . . . Here, you don't score, but you win the game, which is better than scoring."

I think you are right here.

I believe that is what Belichick was thinking: make this play, it is only two yards, I've got Brady, I've got Moss, the offense has been doing great today, if we make it Manning does not **even get a chance** to go down the field (whether it is 70 yards or 30 yards), we run out the clock, game over.

In another game this weekend, forgot who it was, but a team was behind and the running back could have gone in for the touchdown, but if he did so there would have been time left for the other team to attempt to come back. Instead he took a knee at the one yard line when he easily could have scored, ran off more time from the clock and then left it to the field goal kicker to win it with no time left on the clock. I think that was a similar kind of thing. Now if the field goal kicker missed the kick and they lose then people would have been upset with the running back for taking the knee at the one yard line when he could have scored easily. But the kicker made the kick, there was no time left and I thought it was an intelligent move. Likewise, if the Patriots make that two yards and run out the clock we would hear people singing Belichick's praises.