You're trailing 17-15 in the final two minutes of the Super Bowl, but you've got the ball inside the 10-yard line, with one time-out left. Your opponent has a hall-of-fame quarterback with a resume built on last-second heroics, and two timeouts. A field goal wins the ball game, but everybody knows you don't want to give the other team too much time...
Obviously we all saw this play out last night. The Giants ran the football enough to eat some time and make the Patriots use one of their timeouts, and eventually the New England defense split wide open to let Ahmad Bradshaw (despite his best efforts) toppled into the endzone with about a minute left. Obviously, the Giant defense made their stand, but Bradshaw was obviously trying to stop himself at the goal line -- and has since noted that his teammates were all yelling at him to hold up short of the endzone, although Tom Coughlin said he never gave any order like that (but thought about it). Had the Giants played for the field goal, it would have been the equivalent of an extra point and possibly left the Pats with 20 seconds left and no timeouts, but only in need of a field goal themselves to win. By getting the touchdown, New England was forced to go for the endzone to win, but obviously had more time, plus one more chance to stop the clock.
Now, there are a two sides here strategically, and I see both of them. On the one hand, any number of things can go wrong playing for a field goal, even a short one. But the same can also be said of giving Tom Brady 60 seconds and a timeout, when you can easily stall for time. Was letting Bradshaw score the right call for New England? I haven't seen anything confirming whether the Patriots let him in deliberately, but it certainly seemed that way.
So what do you do? Discuss in the comments.
How would you have handled the Super Bowl's late-game situation last night on offense/defense?
Go for the touchdown/let 'em score and save more time (142 votes)
Play for the field goal and clock/do your best to keep them out and block the kick (45 votes)
187 total votes