David Johnson sat and watched as the Arizona Cardinals called a weakside counter with their rookie running back on third and two coming out of a two minute warning.
The play as it was lost three yards, set up a fourth and five and the rest was, as they say, history.
Much has been made of the playcall, the personnel, and the reasoning behind all of it, but not much of it holds water.
Johnson and the Cardinals say that Johnson missed a blitz pickup on the second and ten play previous, that required him to be pulled and coached up.
That’s all well and good, but as pro’s like Jay Feely and Kurt Warner let it be known on Twitter, there is a time and a place.
Down two, with the game on the line and a rookie quarterback getting his first live game action is not the place or time.
Except they had just had the 2 minute warning prior to the 3rd and 2 play— Jay Feely (@jayfeely) September 24, 2018
As coaches you make sure your best player is in the game on that critical play. https://t.co/DqbRt94DZA
... or just wait til after the series & grab the pictures & talk it through! I never remember being taken out on a 3rd down after screwing up on 2nd! Biggest play of game is next one - not the last one... IMO!— Kurt Warner (@kurt13warner) September 25, 2018
That’s why the reasoning does not hold up.
You are coming up to and out of the two minute warning after the “miss” blitz pick up occurred.
You have a third and two and you are averaging roughly three yards a carry with David Johnson on interior runs at this point.
Chase Edmonds has run four times up to this point for 13 yards, so you can see what McCoy is thinking... Except you can’t.
If the numbers were closer to 20 and 12 carries respectively with a three yard per carry versus four yard per carry you could make more of case for Edmonds.
But, proving a point at this juncture in a game, that no player is immune to being pulled for a “mistake” is simply not the way to win football games.
It is a great way to make a point. No one is above the team, when one of us makes a mistake, we all fail.
However, there is a time and a place for this.
Not at the expense of the rest of the team.
Not at the expense of your first potential win as an NFL head coach.
Maybe this is the springboard the Cardinals need. It just feels like a bad way to have gone about everything.