Be honest Green Bay fans

It wasn’t the coin toss that lost you the game


Photo Courtesy of The Chicago Tribune

Aaron Rodgers and Carson Palmer watching the overtime coin toss.

Mason Schweizer, Staff Writer

The Green Bay Packers and Arizona Cardinals played an all-time great Divisional playoff game in Phoenix Saturday that featured not one but two prodigious Hail Mary’s from the cannon that is Aaron Rodgers’ right arm.

These two bombs came on the improbable game-tying drive from the Packers, only to see them lose in overtime.

Packers fans, whose smugness can only be matched by the fan base in Foxboro, couldn’t just accept the fact they lost to a superior opponent. They cried that the overtime rules were unfair, and that in the coin-flip debacle that featured an unflipped coin, the Packers were not able to change their call from tails to heads when the referee reflipped.

Instead of complaining about rules that have been in place for years, why not question your head coach? Rather than kick an extra point to send the game to overtime, why did Packers coach Mike McCarthy not go for the two-point conversion to win the game outright at the end of regulation?

The Packers converted four of their six two-point attempts this season, with a 67 percent mark good for second in the NFL. Statistically, that number is obviously higher than the 50 percent chance you have of getting the coin toss, plus the fact that to win the game on the first possession, the team must score a touchdown.

But let’s throw out the numbers here, as I am a firm believer that statistics can be deceiving anyways, and look at this logically.

The Packers had just completed a 60-yard pass on 4th and 20, and then scored on a second unreal bomb from Rodgers. Emotionally, the Cardinals smothering defense was at its most vulnerable, and were susceptible to letting up a three yard conversion score.

Not to mention, you have Aaron Rodgers. Though he didn’t put up the same MVP numbers that Cam Newton had this season, Rodgers is still the best overall quarterback in the league, and certainly in consideration as an all-time great.

And you would rather leave the game to a chance coin flip and subsequent gameplay than give the future Hall-of-Famer one chance to win your team the game?

Now I am not saying the overtime rules are without fault. It would make more sense to play a full fifth quarter rather than the current rule–if the receiving team of the overtime kick scores a touchdown, the game is over. If they kick a field goal or do not score, the other team gets a chance to possess the ball–a field goal that ties the game again results in the teams playing on, where if the second team scores after the first team did not, the game is over. Sort of confusing, I know.

But with the NFL already looking to add two games to the schedule and the health concerns that are currently in the sport’s spotlight, it is unlikely the NFL Players Association would approve of all overtime games getting a full extra quarter.

Teams need to take chances to win games, especially playoff games. McCarthy and his Packers went from ultra-aggressive with the Hail Mary’s to ultra-conservative when they kicked the extra point for overtime.

Maybe, in a league that is always innovating itself, teams should look at how to be more innovative at the end of games.