Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Time to Pay up

If you're a Sean Payton fan or a New Orleans Saints fan then look away now, because I have a real axe to grind. NFL Total Access has Coach Payton on the show and they decided to run a clip of the now famous onside kick. What got my back up was the way they talked about it like it was the most genius move since a QB first picked up the football and threw it. Now don't get me wrong, it took a heck of a pair of balls to make that call and all credit to Coach Payton for his guts. But for me, that doesn't detract from the fact that it was a stupid call. As far as I'm aware the recovery rate for onside kicks by the kicking team is something in the region of 20%. And the Saints only barely managed to fall on the good side of that. With the Colts ahead by 4 it was hardly a huge gap and with the total score at 10-6, it hadn't exactly been a shoot out up until that point. If the Colts had recovered and thus given Manning a short field, that might have been enough to put the Saints away. The end product would have been a universal vilification of Coach Payton. Let's get real here. Coach Payton is now known as a hero and a genius because of one simple thing; Hank Baskett fumbled the ball. There wasn't a Saints player close to him. If Baskett had made that play, Payton would have looked like the dumbest of the dumb at that moment. Instead of celebrating, they'd all be looking at their coach wondering what the hell was going on in his head. So if people want to credit Payton for his guts and risk taking then that's fine, but don't make out that he's some kind of genius for that call. It was stupid, and like much of the Saints Superbowl winning season, they caught some incredible luck. Rant over. Have a great day everyone.

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