1. Welcome to Green Bay Packers NFL Football Forum & Community!
    Packer Forum is one of the largest online communities for the Green Bay Packers.

    You are currently viewing our community forums as a guest user.

    Sign Up or

    Having an account grants you additional privileges, such as creating and participating in discussions. Furthermore, we hide most of the ads once you register as a member!

McCarthy's Playcalling

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by Carl, Jan 22, 2014.

  1. Carl

    Carl Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,604
    Ratings:
    +898
    I see lots of criticizing MM for his play calling and I don't understand why at all.

    Under his play calling this season, the Packers were 8th in points, 3rd in yards with over 400 a game, 6th in passing yards, and 7th in rushing yards. Those are WITH A SECOND/THRID STRING QB for about half the season. How anyone can think bad play calling leads to those numbers is beyond me.

    Commonly, there are few plays that don't work, a fan assumes it's the play call, not the execution, and then conclude MM is bad with his entire play calling duty. That's terrible reasoning.

    An example is the last drive vs. the 49ers when people wanted to give it to Lacy three times from the 9. After seeing the 49ers stuff every run the last two weeks in goal to go, it was the correct choice not to try. It looks like McCarthy knew it wasn't a great idea to give it a shot. Besides, most failed plays have some degree of player error. Nobody blocked well on Cobb's run and nobody got open the other two plays. And where's the play calling credit for the drive getting that far in the first place?

    McCarthy is a good play caller based on the facts and entire body of work, not a bad one based on a few plays a fan may disagree with.
     
    • Agree Agree x 7
  2. Dylan Hoppe

    Dylan Hoppe Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2013
    Messages:
    454
    Ratings:
    +70
    I agree but the honest truth is that we, as fans, will always be overly confident in our players. The players are the exciting part of the game and that is why we blame poor play on the coach. The coaching staff can be replaced by a couple of guys, the team and talent of the players cannot. In other words, we blame the coach because it's an easy way out.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. Forget Favre

    Forget Favre Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2009
    Messages:
    7,834
    Ratings:
    +2,673
    I was feeling really frustrated at not letting Aaron throw more in a situation that to me would have made sense.
    Like in a 2nd/3rd down 8 yards or more.
    From watching the Broncos beat the Cheatriots, I thought they had it right.
    Protect the QB and let him throw.
    We should take a page from that.
    Then again, I'm not the coach so what do I know?
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. captainWIMM

    captainWIMM Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2012
    Messages:
    4,822
    Ratings:
    +2,019
    Normally, I don´t want to criticize any coach about his play calling, but I really didn´t get the calls MM made vs. the Niners on that first-and-goal. If he knew the Niners stuffed every goal to go run over the last few weeks it makes absolutely no sense to run with Cobb on first down. And IMO it´s inexplicable that Lacy wasn´t even on the filed for one of those three plays.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  5. Carl

    Carl Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,604
    Ratings:
    +898
    Knowing the Niners are tough to run on goal to go, McCarthy came out in a passing formation without Lacy so the Niners wouldn't expect run, and then went to the outside to avoid going through that front seven.

    That's my guess on his reasoning. Plus, even if me made the wrong decision, it doesn't make his overall play calling bad.
     
  6. captainWIMM

    captainWIMM Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2012
    Messages:
    4,822
    Ratings:
    +2,019
    Mostly I think he is a really good player caller, and the offensive production during his tenure prove that.

    But sometimes I really don´t get some calls and I wonder what he was thinking calling that specific play (no matter how hard you try to find an explanation for it, that Cobb run was a terrible idea, just like running Franklin up the middle on 4th-and-1 vs. the Bengals).
     
  7. longtimefan

    longtimefan Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2005
    Messages:
    16,642
    Ratings:
    +2,951
    Cobb's run wasnt typical as one would expect a run in the red zone to be..That play has worked in the past (but not sure about in red zone?)

    Lacey may have had his asthma kick in again..not sure but it is a possibility
     
  8. HyponGrey

    HyponGrey Caseus Locutus Est

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    Messages:
    3,758
    Ratings:
    +1,030
    This topic has been discussed ad nauseam, but I will repeat myself. MM is a great playcaller who has a few bonehead plays he likes to call, especially when he gets cute or agressive.
     
  9. NOMOFO

    NOMOFO Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Messages:
    1,105
    Ratings:
    +394
    I think he's a very good play caller and does a great job of keeping defenses off balance. Having said that, I don't care what Mac wants to say about that hand off to Cobb against the Niners, that's not a good call right there.

    There are two things I question: Why is he giving Kuhn the ball when we need a foot for the first down? There is no way on God's green earth Lacey shouldn't be taking all of those. I also have a big problem that towards the end of the year they actually were always going empty on short yardage. I just don't get that and I would love to be able to ask MAC what is up with that. That's just doing the defense a favor. I know it's Aaron Rodgers, but I still can't see taking the play action off the table in that situation.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Carl

    Carl Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,604
    Ratings:
    +898
    Franklin was the only healthy running back at that time.
     
  11. rodell330

    rodell330 Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2012
    Messages:
    2,911
    Ratings:
    +984
    How can anyone not question MM's playcalling at times? he's so predictable at times it's not even funny.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  12. Sunshinepacker

    Sunshinepacker Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2013
    Messages:
    973
    Ratings:
    +346

    You don't have to do much to be classified as a poor play caller. I don't care what the offense was ranked overall because of his assinine decision to hand the ball to Eddie Lacy at the end of the half in week 14. The Packers were at the 32 yard line with four seconds left! And McCarthy calls a friggin running play for Eddie Lacy? Guess what happened, Lacy hurt his ankle which affected his play for the rest of the year. Would have been nice if Lacy was healthy enough to play more than 37 snaps against the 49ers in the playoffs. Kind of ties in to his weird playcalls with Randall Cobb at running back against the 49ers.

    Or there was his brilliant decision to accept a holding penalty in Week 9 against the Bears (with a little over a minute to go) thereby turning down a FREE TIMEOUT. This was also a game in which he randomly decided to save all of his timeouts until there was only 1:14 left in the game!

    Again, you don't need a laundry list of plays to make a guy a mediocre-to-poor in game coach. McCarthy is a terrific developer of talent on offense and is good at making sure his guys fit in his offense. Game days aren't his time to shine though.
     
    • Winner Winner x 1
  13. captainWIMM

    captainWIMM Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2012
    Messages:
    4,822
    Ratings:
    +2,019
    That´s true, but you don´t run the smallest guy on the field through the middle against this front seven. He had a lot of success running outside in that game.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. NOMOFO

    NOMOFO Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Messages:
    1,105
    Ratings:
    +394
    I think play calling and decision making are two different things. I think his play calling is very good. I think his in-game decision making for things like clock management and penalty calls is poor. He gets brain lock big-time, like throwing the flag on a non-reviewable play. I worry about him making the quick decisions on things like that. I wish Murphy would assign him an in-game coach like many teams have. I'm a fan of Macs but he certainly does need help in that area.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  15. Sunshinepacker

    Sunshinepacker Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2013
    Messages:
    973
    Ratings:
    +346
    I dunno, that Eddie Lacy run was a play call and it was one of the dumbest things I've ever seen. However, I do understand what you mean. Just tough for me to separate out the pay calling from the game management. Your head coach should be the game manager, if he can't do that then he's just am offensive coordinator with a different title.
     
  16. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2011
    Messages:
    47
    Ratings:
    +17
    I see quite a few coaches do that and it is just horrible. Maybe it makes sense if you've got a QB like Newton or Kaepernick where you can run a QB draw or something. Not the case with the Packers or most other teams that I see doing it.
     
  17. NOMOFO

    NOMOFO Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Messages:
    1,105
    Ratings:
    +394
    A lot of teams have asstnt coaches that are tasked with handling that type game management. ...basically in-game on the spot consulting.
     
  18. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2011
    Messages:
    47
    Ratings:
    +17
    Agree 100%. It's easy to second guess play calls after they fail so I try not to do it, but screwing up game management is a different animal.

    With the plethora of close games that the Packers had this year it was really apparent how terrible he is at it. His favorite is, when behind, to save his timeouts for offense even though they save much more time on defense.

    When to go for 2 is an area where he just doesn't seem to grasp the concept of probabilities.

    The worst was the Pittsburgh game. When the Steelers got first and goal he should have let them score immediately. Instead he waited until 2nd down to let them score and it cost them 40 seconds. Those 40 seconds would have been helpful as the Packers watched the clock run out within spitting distance of the goal line. When asked in the press conference why he didn't let them score on 1st down, his response was that he didn't think of it. Ugh!

    btw, this is not just a McCarthy thing. I see coaches make these elemental game-management mistakes constantly. Same ones. Even in the Steeler game, Tomlin should have just taken 3 kneel downs and then kicked a chip shot to win. Instead he got a TD and gave the Packers a lot of time to come back. Pure coaching failure.
     
  19. NOMOFO

    NOMOFO Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Messages:
    1,105
    Ratings:
    +394
    Holding time-outs for offense- That one drives me insane as well! I got into a debate with a friend about that in the Bears game where Rodgers got hurt. McCarthy did just that...saved timeouts instead of calling them on defense! I fail to see the logic in that at that point! ... given the number of pass interference calls these days....it's even more stupid to hold time-outs. I can't count the amount of PI calls I saw this year that ended up getting teams in FG range. Beyond that... who do we trust more? The defense to make a stop or Rodgers to move the ball and be able to manage the clock? Sometimes I wonder during the year if MAC isn't think "Well, if I call a TO the opponent will actually try to get the first down instead of just running the clock down...and that's not a good thing". lol
     
  20. yooperpackfan

    yooperpackfan Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2005
    Messages:
    737
    Ratings:
    +332
    I agree.
    I think he takes too much decision making upon himself during in game situations.
    Assigning him help makes sense, but some people can't give up that total control thing and I'm afraid he is one of those guys so that could backfire.
     
  21. Carl

    Carl Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,604
    Ratings:
    +898
    Play calling and decisions are different things as another poster said. If you think that one Lacy run overrules all the offensive success, then we'll have to disagree.

    Also, on that Bears drive, the the Bears were running down the field at will. Without accepting that holding call, they most likely would have run for another first or two and ended the game. Plus, a timeout saves the same amount of time whether it's called at 1:14 or 3:14 or 12:14.
     
  22. Carl

    Carl Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2013
    Messages:
    1,604
    Ratings:
    +898
    Franklin's run wouldn't be questioned so much if Franklin and then the first Bengals defender to scoop it up both held on to the ball. Franklin didn't protect the ball well at all.
     
  23. RustyShackleford

    RustyShackleford Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2011
    Messages:
    47
    Ratings:
    +17
    In the Bears game it ended up not mattering when McCarthy called a timeout because the defense never could get off the field so the offense never got a chance, but a coach can't just assume that. He has to plan as though his defense can make a stop, and if they do make a stop, he'll be able to run more offensive plays if he had used those timeouts on defense. A timeout on defense saves the full 40 seconds. A timeout on offense saves, at most, 20 seconds. With 3 timeouts available, that's an extra minute of valuable clock time.

    As mentioned, it didn't end up making a difference in that game, but that doesn't make it any less of a poor decision.
     
  24. mradtke66

    mradtke66 Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    Messages:
    444
    Ratings:
    +171
    You'll note that the fullback dives out of I-formation are working better with Lacey in the game. That's probably why they're calling them more again--they're working because the defense is worrying about the primary ball carrier.

    I'm a little curious why it works like that at the NFL, probably just the over all more complicated schemes. In high school, it was always (well, about 95% of the time, anyway) "ILB: You go where the fullback goes. Doesn't matter if he has the ball, he will take you to the ball."
     
  25. Sunshinepacker

    Sunshinepacker Cheesehead

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2013
    Messages:
    973
    Ratings:
    +346
    No, timeouts are more valuable before the two minute warning when you're on defense and need the ball back. Before the two-minute warning you get a free timeout to stop the clock (and if you're assuming that you can't stop the other team from running the ball then you don't need timeouts anyway because you've given up). If you have three timeouts and the offense has a first down with 2:30 left in the game then you can stop them and still have the two-minute warning as a timeout for the offense and you probably get the ball back with 2:05-2:10 left on the clock. Time for one play before the two-minute warning and then you have two full minutes to get down the field. If you wait until AFTER the two-minute warning, you get the ball back with ~1:40 left on the clock and no stoppage to help. You've effectively given up almost 30 seconds of offense by using the timeouts after the two minute warning.
     

Share This Page