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November 16, 2009



wow. the Jets fans in my office will have an even more than normal look of suffering on their faces. Thanks for the summary of the game. I was outside getting exercise at the time.


Could not have happened to a nicer guy.


I watched. A rarity. It sucked.


Tell me about it. I'm one of those MJD fantasy owners. But he gave me 18 points before that so it's okay.

A very weird ending, for sure.


Let's see...do I punt the ball and watch Manning take the ball 50 yards down the field or keep the best players on my team out there and let them win it or lose it? And this is why Coach Hoodie is the greatest coach in the game...because he did go for it. Brass ones I tell ya!

The time outs...well, that's another story.

Cecil Turner

Interesting take on the probabilities, but this conclusion is just plain wrong:

But any adjustment in their likelihood of scoring from either field position increases the advantage of going for it. You can play with the numbers any way you like, but it’s pretty hard to come up with a realistic combination of numbers that makes punting the better option.
As Steve Sailer's superb analysis points out, the critical stat is not the Colts' chances of scoring, but the Pats' chance of making the first down. The old school answer comes from a critical 4th-and-two probability of approximately 40% (taken from PAT attempts). If we insert 40% instead of 60% into Mr Burke's equation, we get:
(0.40 * 1) + (0.60 * (1-0.53)) = 0.68 WP
That gives the schoolbook solution (punt) a very slight edge, and requires no real manipulation of the numbers. And while the presumed increase of the Colts' scoring chances does warp the analysis slightly toward "go for it," if we ask how the Pats got into the 4th-and-two in the first place, it's not nearly so clear-cut.

Besides, with 20-10 hindsight I can confidently opine: bad call, Bill.

Jack is Back!

You can do the statistical win probability analysis until the Bears win a game without an Int but it doesn't matter since you need to factor in Manning's record of driving 66 yards and 30 yards with that time remaining. Outside of Joe Montana and Elway or Unitas, I don't know of anyone who has a better last minute drive record. Even the poll at the start of the game gave Manning 2/3rd of the fan vote over Brady.

And Manning is doing it with something like his 5 or 6th new set of prime receivers and a defense with 2 rookie CB's plus a rookie coach. Even Denver beat the Pats with a rookie coach, a so-so QB and a disgruntled prime WR.

Since I live down here in Jags country, I was a little surprised at the MJD kneel down but then I realized the tactic - you have one of the best FG kickers in the NFL and you don't want Sanchez to handle the ball again. That was more respect to his win probability than necessary but hey, it worked.

Like in golf, its the score that matters - everything else is irrelevant.

OT: Can anyone remember more smack mouth hits on KO, Punts, passes and rushes than happened all over the league yesterday? Tommy Jackson and crew are going to go wild tonight.

Thomas Collins

The defense of the Patriots, which had held up well for three quarters, was offering little resistance to the Colts offense in the fourth quarter. It would have been no problem for Manning to drive the Colts the seventy yards or so it would have taken after a punt. With a little under two minutes left and one timeout, Manning had plenty of time. Belichick made the correct call.

Colts-Pats regular season has the excitement of a conference championship game. Although my team lost, it was a great game to see.

By the way, a few years ago I was at the bar at the Providence Marriott on the weekend of a Colts-Pats playoff game in Foxboro. Bill Polian and other Colts folks were also at the bar. Very classy folks. I have a lot of respect for the Colts.

Advice to friends and spouses and sig others of Pats fans. "It's just a game" is not the thing to say this week.

By the way, with all due respect to Peyton and Mr. Gisele worshippers, if my life depends on my team winning a football game, my QB is Bradshaw. Tough guy, clutch performer, great arm and lots of smarts (although, because of cultural bias against his accent, he never was given credit for his smarts).

Dave (in MA)
my QB is Bradshaw. Tough guy, clutch performer, great arm and lots of smarts
Yeah, but he's OLD.

The home team would have gotten the call on that Faulk reception.

Patrick R. Sullivan

Cecil, the odds of making the two point conversion don't translate to this particular situation. For one thing, in the two-pointer the defense has a much smaller area to cover than the Colts did.

But, Belichick did make an error at the end. He should have let the Colts score a TD on their first play (i.e. don't defend). Then Brady would have had a minute and a half to take the Pats down for a FG to win.


I don't agree with the analysis for the simple fact that if you don't make the first down you pretty much lose the game right there. The stats are not really that meaningful unless you did them with teams with the approximate strengths and records of the two teams involved. But if you accept that you had a 40% chance of losing the game by going for it I don't see how you would have less than that by punting. I am of the school make them earn it by going 70 yards in 2 minutes.


I should have said more than that by punting, not less.


Belichick violated an unwritten rule of the NFL.

Offense doesn't lose the game, ever. You punt and the TV audience gets to watch the long drawn out drama of the two-minute drill, with your defense either winning or losing the game.

Well, that and the increased ad revenue.

I'd also agree with Mr. Sullivan, on the first Colt's offensive play you blitz with the entire defense, either creating a holding penalty, or a turnover, or allowing the quick score.

hit and run

We kept trying to tell people it wasn't a tax cut,it was http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Millions-will-have-to-repay-apf-3724344310.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=6&asset=&ccode=>just reduced tax withholding:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- More than 15 million taxpayers could unexpectedly owe taxes when they file their federal returns next spring because the government was too generous with their new Making Work Pay tax credit.
The tax credit, which is supposed to pay individuals up to $400 and couples up to $800, was President Barack Obama's signature tax break in the massive stimulus package enacted in February.
The IRS, in a response to the audit, advised taxpayers to check their withholding throughout the year to make sure they don't get hit with an unexpected tax bill.

Thanks for that advice ... in mid-November.

Jack is Back!

Teddy Bruschi was a little miffed - he said the decision sent a signal to the Pat's defense: you can't hold them from marching down the field. He says it will take time for Hoodie to resurrect any confidence the D have in his coaching. Who knows. They play the Jets next week and any NE win over a NYC team erases all kind of bad memories.


I watched this game for about 10 minutes, then decided that I had "no dog in this fight" and went surfing.

Cecil Turner

For one thing, in the two-pointer the defense has a much smaller area to cover than the Colts did.

The contention is that it has more in common with a "game deciding" 4th-and-two than a standard conversion attempt where getting burned is far more of a concern than giving up the first down. I think that's right. And while a >12 yard pass might be plausible, it's very unlikely if you're playing the percentages. I also think the Colts' short-yardage defense played it that way (extremely tight), which was also a reason Faulk was bobbling the ball (with Bullitt's help) as he came back past the marker.

Interestingly, the Zeus simulation program gives a much more believable margin (77.3% to 75.7% advantage to "go for it"). I suspect the numbers are still high, for the same reason that a standard conversion attempt is a different animal, but the margin appears more plausible.


Patriots lost...Belichek gets agita....good.

Go Chargers!


No matter who wins or loses, the important thing is that nobody who's been falsely accused of racism is allowed in the league.


Thanks for that advice ... in mid-November.

Gonna be real good Obama's poll numbers in mid-April, though. :)


The tapes of the Colts practices must have shown him something.

Jack is Back!


Thank God that Goodell's moral compass was set on North last evening as his host Bud Adams gave multiple "birds" to the Bills bench and Owner suite. What is it with these 86 year old guys, anyway?

Jim Rhoads a/k/a vjnjagvet

And we switched it in the beginning of the 4th Qtr. Sheesh.


--He should have let the Colts score a TD on their first play (i.e. don't defend).--

This seems to be an increasingly considered option these days, as does the refusal by the offensive team to take the uncontested score.
I look forward to the day where a defense tries to concede a TD with a couple of minutes left but the offense refuses the offer and the ball carrier runs around in circles, Fran Tarkenton like, with nobody chasing him for a minute or so until the defense realizes they're running out the clock.
Might for a short time put a little personality back in this increasingly stilted and humorless sport, unless of course one considers TO, "OchoCinco" and off-field gun/knifefights entertaining.

Jack is Back!


I have a very close friend who is a member of the NFL HOF and spent 13 years as a pro and made 12 All-Pro teams. He is also a graduate engineer - so, not your average NFL college drop-out.

He told me once, "Jack, they paid us big money not to grow up." What you have are young men in tremendous physical shape (considering the beating their bodies take) but with minds under the control of the ownership and coaching staff. Name one QB who calls his own plays. Not even Peyton Manning (probably the smartest QB since Montana and before Joe, Unitas). The intellectual pursuit you describe above ain't gone to happen as long as the paycheck is bigger than the risk involved.

Mike K

I watched that ending and I think the Patriots made the first down. But what do I know ? My team is USC.


Bill Polian and other Colts folks were also at the bar. Very classy folks. I have a lot of respect for the Colts.
The folks in Baltimore probably disagree with you, T C.

Thomas Collins

Was Polian part of the crew that up and left Baltimore, larry? I thought that was a prior crew, but I may be wrong.


Bellicheck is awesome. The fun part is watching Charlie Weis go down. Now THAT's entertainment

Terry Gain

The odds of an NFL coach making a really bad coaching decision at the same time as Obama is making a fool of himself are 1/100. Curiously it's the same odds for a really good coaching decision or no decision at all.



What is even sadder is that by the time they are out of the league, many of them are crippled or broke, or both.


sorry, that was meant for Jack, actually.


It's not like we were playing the Jets for crying out loud. You play the Jets, you punt the ball!


--The intellectual pursuit you describe above ain't gone to happen as long as the paycheck is bigger than the risk involved.--

I'm not looking for intellect just some fun.
I mean for Pete's sake, when, within ten years, the Raiders alone could put on the field the likes of Warren Wells, Fred Blanda, Biletnikoff, Lamonica, Hayes, Matuszak, Ted Hendricks, Villapiano, Stabler, Shell, Bob Brown, Upshaw, and on and on and now the entire league can only point to players with "personality" in the mold of egomaniacal asshats like TO or Chad it just aint fun anymore.
Then it was a business AND a sport; now its all bidness with a side order of gangstas.


Sorry, switched my Biletnikoff with my Blanda. *"George" obviously*

Melinda Romanoff

And you left out Sistrunk, from the University of Mars. My favorite line from the NFL, ever.


Now that I think about it, Irsay was the owner when they sneaked (snuck?) out of Baltimore. My bad, T C.


PS: George Blanda's among my top 5 player faves of all time. I lived in Lexington, KY when he was there and Bear Bryant was the coach. Da Bears (my team) drafted him and I got to see him some there, mainly as a kicker. What A leg! When he was (relatively) young, his kickoffs routinely went in the stands. I saw the game his consecutive extra point streak was broken. Same game, Colts' George Shaw, franchise QB for future and forever was hurt. Some dude who wasn't even on the program came in, threw 3 TD's in 2d half, and we never heard from Shaw again. Dude was Johnny Unitas. Blanda went to AFL to play QB full time at Houston first, Oakland later. Bears thought he was through in early 60's. Boy, did he get the last laugh. My final Blanda/Forrest Gump was seeing Blanda-led Oilers beat Chargers in San Diego for AFL championship.


I went to see the Titans beat the Bills at LP field yesterday, but I missed Bud Adams shooting Bills fans the bird.


He really shouldn't have done that. There must have been some bad blood I don't know about.


Knock, knock, may a lady enter here if she promises to close her eyes :)

BR the Imp

I have this wonderful, calm feeling tonight. So, I can spend some time further deciphering the code of men. Perhaps I'll find another great delight like beer somewhere in here :)

I've narrowed the code down to an obscure language spoken by men of the San tribe, created especially by them so the women wouldn't understand, and they could brag to their hearts' content about all their exploits. It seems to pertain to balls being kicked or thrown or held in the hand while running, and it contains a lot of clicking sounds, later incorporated into the Xhosa language, either through war or love...


Don't forget Brett Favre when you list those QBs like Elway & Unitas. I saw them all and Brett is a two-minute drill maestro.


Now don't confuse me, I'm just about to unlock the mystery of beer making :)

See, they're also plotting their men-only language under cover of making beer.


Triple clicks: Here's how to pronounce the three different types of clicks in the San language.

Since the men in the thread above probably only use one or two clicks depending on whether their modern-day tools are Macs or PCs, this will simplify my quest greatly.


Now I have to find some pictographs of the San running around with balls in their hands to see if I'm on the right track here.


Aha! There's a fourth click in the code. I thought I had it narrowed down to baseball, football or basketball. But these guys must be playing golf - they're looking for their balls!



I don't think they're looking for balls or beer bottles, I think they're looking for Coke">http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/gods_must_be_crazy/">Coke Bottles that the crazy gods dropped from the sky.


Daddy, Love that movie! Saw it years ago and again just recently. Its childlike innocence and sincerity is so beautiful and really captures the spirit of the white tribe's sense of humour, too.


After a good night's rest, the decoding of men-talk continues, newly refreshed. Earth travel destination scout BR reports the following in Pleiades Travel & Leisure, morning edition:

This is the decoding result of one paragraph above:

"With 2:08 left and the Colts with only one timeout, a successful 4th-and-2 conversion wins the game for all practical purposes. A conversion on 4th-and-2 would be successful 60 percent of the time. Historically, in a situation with 2:00 left and needing a TD to either win or tie, teams get the TD 53 percent of the time from that field position. The total win probability for the 4th-down conversion attempt would therefore be:

(0.60 * 1) + (0.40 * (1-0.53)) = 0.79 WP (WP stands for win probability)`"

“With 2:08 left” – Earth math uses ratios. Therefore, we believe 2:08 to be a ratio related to their compass. If you have a body and you stand by the ocean, facing to their topside of their planet which they call “North,” the limb on the seaside is “left,” and the other one is “right.”

“and the Colts with only one timeout,” – the planet has a huge variety of beautiful horses of all colors, some of them wild, and one can enjoy riding them in the waves. Now, Earth people have a species called “kids” and so these smaller horses are for them. We believe “timeout” is a sign of recent heightened awareness amongst Earth people, especially the men, that there are universes outside of time.

Breaking for coffee and cigar.


For travellers’ delight, Earth Location Scout BR’s decoding continues:

“…a successful 4th-and-2 conversion wins the game for all practical purposes. A conversion on 4th-and-2 would be successful 60 percent of the time” – planet Earth has multiple religions, and some Earth people get converted while playing games that involve running with their balls in their hands. They have a huge capacity for making love and we believe when partners of different religions come together, the female converts to the male’s religion, and they do this many times.


Pleiades Travel & Leisure, Morning Edition, cont’d-2.

For travellers’ delight, Earth Location Scout BR’s decoding continues:

“Historically, in a situation with 2:00 left and needing a TD to either win or tie, teams get the TD 53 percent of the time from that field position.”

As we said before, they have very active and pleiaful lives involving various positions of their beautiful limbs. All of this being new to our Pleiadian viewers, we will leave the various “2:00 left” and “TD” and “tie” positions to our viewers’ imaginations and to whet your appetite for out-island travelling.


http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/256233”>Firefighters prevail over nude volleyballers


http://www.wayfaring.info/2008/05/26/nude-vacations/”>More travel links aka St. Jane’s.


Pleiades Travel & Leisure, Morning Edition, cont’d-3.

"The total win probability for the 4th-down conversion attempt would therefore be:

(0.60 * 1) + (0.40 * (1-0.53)) = 0.79 WP (WP stands for win probability)`"

Fellow Pleiadians, you won't believe this, but Earthlings actually keep score of their scores! We're not sure who converted whom in that formula, but it's a planetwide pastime, pleasant and productive of the little species.

Next: Tips for observing local customs.

BR In Celebration of the Arrival of the Avatars

Afternoon Delight.

Pleiades Travel & Leisure, Afternoon Edition

Tips for observing local customs and mannerisms when vacationing on the out-islands Earth, Mars, Venus, etc.

Books: Sir Richard F. Burton’s Mountains of the Moon.
Movies: Earth Girls Are Easy

One of their most pleasant activities is what they call laughter. A mild form of our instantaneous levitation explosions. While visiting there, be sure to show them your extended pleasure version (I think that’s how they spell it on Earth).

Here is a pictograph (sent via telepathy) of the position to assume when laughing. On the internet it’s called ROFWL, pronounced Garwxyful in Pleiadian. Notice the position of the leg in the air – that’s the left leg. The height of the angle is very important in places like Japan and Saudi Arabia.

Tip: If you decide on renting a body instead of creating your form on the spot (more advisable, saves time going through customs lines), only do ROFWL on soft surfaces, until you’ve mastered their art of judo pratfalls.

Finally, your location scout had some reservations about recommending this spot, due to its overall climatic conditions of seriousness, but on my journeys, I’ve managed to soften it up and it’s now ready for your arrival. It’s now a thought responsive universe amenable to our pleasure. Set your metronome for Earth year, Western Calendar 2009 and forward. From that base, you can travel into other historical periods of interest. Great games, spectacular scenery, vibrant music and delicious cuisine await you. Bon appetit!

BR In Celebration of the Arrival of the Avatars

PPS: The left-leg-in-the-air position only pertains to humans, the species who walk on two legs, when they’re on their backs laughing. Don’t confuse that with the species on four legs who also occasionally lift a leg at a different angle.


PS: If you’re wearing a female body, when this happens to you, it means an offer of conversion from one of those wonderful male beings:

“That forced Ryan to use his last timeout. Jones-Drew dropped to a knee at the 1-yard line on the next play, and quarterback David Garrard knelt on the next two downs to waste more time and set up the winning kick.”


Better links:

Firefighters prevail over nude volleyballers

More travel links aka St. Jane’s, especially the last four.


Homesite for Hidden Beach Resort,
hm hm hmmmmmmmmmm

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