FanPost

Back to the Future and Haley's Fourth Down Calls

I just wanted to point out a little flaw in some of the logic as Haley's fourth down calls get debated.  While everybody has a right to their opinion on the matter (personally, I would have tried the field goal on 4th and 2), nobody can definitively say, "If we would have tried a field goal there we would have won in regulation."  We simply have no way of knowing what would really happen.

First of all, that statement works out of the assumption Succop makes the field goal.  There's no guarantee he does.  There's no guarantee that the play isn't botched in some way, that the snap isn't fumbled or that the Bills block the kick and run it back the other way.  Yes, it's a fairly short field goal, but there's no way to know for sure what the outcome of that play would have been.  The outcome of the 4th and 2 in today's game was pretty neutral, but it could have been disastrous.

Second, and this is where it gets weird, we don't know how the rest of the game would have played out.  The "if we kick it we win in regulation" argument assumes that the rest of the game would have played out exactly as it did, just switching the outcome of one play with another.  That's simply not possible.  This is going to sound like something out of Back to the Future, but once you change that play (the going for it on 4th and 2 play), the rest of the game goes off in a completely different direction.  Let's say the Chiefs make the kick.  The next play from scrimmage would be kicking off back to Buffalo.  From that point on, the rest of the game would be completely different than the one we watched today.  Who knows, maybe CJ Spiller runs that kickoff back for a touchdown.  There's no way of knowing what might have been.  This is one of the problems in playing armchair coach, you can't switch one coaching decision without it affecting everything else that comes after it.  

Along the same lines, you can't send a robot back in time to kill John Elway's mom.  The idea would be that if Elway isn't born the Chiefs will win at least 2 Superbowls in the 90s.  There's just no way to know.

Like I said,  I would have kicked the short field goal, had the decision been mine.  But the rest of the game would have been some completely different thing from the point on.  Like that time when Biff stole that sports almanac from the future. . .

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Arrowhead Pride's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Arrowhead Pride writers or editors.

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