Monday, February 06, 2012

New York Giants top New England Patriots 21-17 in Super Bowl 46 in a Game Won by an Unwanted Touchdown: Maybe the Clock Should Not Run Between Plays in the Last 2 Minutes of the Game


To score or not to score, to let score or not to let score, that is the question.

With about 1 minute left to play and the ball on the 6-yard line, the Patriots elected to let the Giants' Ahmad Bradshaw score the game's final TD to save time on the clock for their own Patriot offense and to give their quarterback Tom Brady a chance to launch a closing perhaps game-winning drive, rather than to allow the Giants to run down the clock and then kick a winning chip-shot field goal with not enough time left on the clock to sustain a catch-up drive.

The strategy backfired as the Patriots could not move down the field, losing the game.

It was a remarkable, virtually unwanted touchdown that won the game, as some of the Giants were yelling at Bradshaw not to score, as he virtually fell back unwillingly into the end zone for the TD.

The NFL may have to enact a special penalty rule for that kind of thing, on either side of the ball, or, what we would recommend, stop the running of the clock between plays in the last two minutes of the game to put a stop to games being decided by serendipity clock management instead of football play.

The safety by penalty on Tom Brady for intentional grounding of the ball on a long pass play in the Patriots' opening drive should also be carefully reviewed and the rule changed to not give opposing teams scored points as gifts. On a pass as long as that play was, a receiver merely has to change his route due to blockage by the defender and the quarterback's throw falls quite unintentionally into an unoccupied part of the field.

We say that as an observer who was rooting for the Giants if only because we have long-standing ties to the Big Apple and because a family member went to the same Waterloo High School in New York State as Tom Coughlin, head coach of the Giants.

The New York Giants came back from a 17-9 deficit to unexpectedly beat the favored New England Patriots 21-17 in U.S. National Football League Super Bowl XLVI in an entertaining game otherwise marked by top coaching by Tom Coughlin and Bill Belichick and their coaching staffs, top defensive play and great passing by both Eli Manning and Tom Brady, the latter of whom set a record for most career Super Bowl yards passing and also completed a record 16 consecutive pass completions, but it was not enough to beat the well-prepared Giants, whose offensive strategy proved to be the right one, dominating the clock and keeping Brady off the field.

In spite of the loss, congratulations have to go out to the Patriots' Danny Woodhead, who scored one TD for the Patriots on a 4-yard pass reception in putting a real topper on his football career.

Take a look at our 2006 posting:

Danny Woodhead : The Best Running Back and Best "Little Guy" in NCAA College Football 2006


This was not the year for the Patriots to win the NFL championship, but there will be others.

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