Monday, February 4, 2013
49ers Offensive Coordinator Greg Roman--IDIOT!
Greg Roman, what the hell was that?
Known as the Einstein of offensive coordinators, you're the brains of the San Francisco 49er offense. Niner fans expect genius from you. So what do you do when it really counts? You regress into idiocy and resort to bone-headed play-calling that cost your team the game. They lost to the Baltimore Ravens, 34-31, in the Super Bowl because of you. What were you thinking?
Near the end of the game, the Niners had backed the Ravens up to their own seven-yard line after safety Ed Reed saved the game for his team by tackling RB Frank Gore there, at the end of a long run. Clearly the game would be won or lost right there, in the shadow of the Ravens' goal. There was plenty of time left, more than two minutes. On the first play Roman did the right thing, calling for a run. Backup RB LaMichael James ran for two yards. Then, Greg, you went haywire. You weren't racing the clock, so why, in the name of God, would you call three straight throws to Michael Crabtree down there?
At the end of the game, at the goal line, you go with what got you there. For the last two years, under the guidance of coach Jim Harbaugh, a notorious hard-ass, the Niners have been basically a smash-mouth team. Sure, near the end zone, the Ravens would stack the line, wary of the run. But, with rugged RB Frank Gore and great rushing QB Colin Kaepernick, one who's skilled at executing the tricky read-option, you take your chances with the run. Then it's brute force against brute force. You rely on your strength, going smash-mouth, staying on the ground. If you don't make it, at least you go down valiantly, with a sense that you gave it your best shot, grinding it out in your signature format.
But no, Greg, you get slick and try to outfox the opposition. I was wincing with each pass. On that critical second down, you should give the ball to Gore. He's probably going to gain a yard or two, making a QB sneak with tall, tough Kaepernick an even more lethal weapon on the next two downs. With rushes, you also use up time, so that if you score, there's less time for the Ravens to get close enough for a decent field-goal try.
On the fourth down, five yards from the goal, after those other stupid passes didn't work, you have no choice but to pass. True, on that play, Ravens' cornerback Jimmy Smith was flagrantly holding Crabtree and the Niners should have had a first down on the penalty, but it shouldn't have come to that. In that situation, most refs won't throw a flag, preferring not to let a penalty have an impact at such a crucial point.
So, when Kaepernick's pass, which was overthrown, sailed harmlessly out of bounds, it was game over, Niners cooked. Sadly, embarrassingly, they went down like wimps, taking the slick way out, enforcing the pre-Harbaugh stereotype that the Niners are softies, reflecting the wine-and-cheese image of the city.
Thanks a lot, Greg.
Posted by Dennis Hunt at 2:30 PM