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JTP53609
11-30-2009, 10:14 AM
big play in the game was in the second qtr....it could of been 2nd and 10 for the ravens at the steeler 25, but there was a penalty on the rats, and tomlin accpeted the penalty making it a first and 15.....WHY do they seem to do this all the time??? this sets up anoter play for the offense for only 5 yards. Sure enough, flacco took a shot deep and because the horrible william "i cannot tackle, cover, catch or run" gay is our starting corner, they hit a big play. Why do we seem to accpet penalties rather than take the down and give them one less chance.....on holds i can see the difference (at times) but my goodness, decline it and make it second and 10...

NWNewell
11-30-2009, 07:30 PM
big play in the game was in the second qtr....it could of been 2nd and 10 for the ravens at the steeler 25, but there was a penalty on the rats, and tomlin accpeted the penalty making it a first and 15.....WHY do they seem to do this all the time??? this sets up anoter play for the offense for only 5 yards. Sure enough, flacco took a shot deep and because the horrible william "i cannot tackle, cover, catch or run" gay is our starting corner, they hit a big play. Why do we seem to accpet penalties rather than take the down and give them one less chance.....on holds i can see the difference (at times) but my goodness, decline it and make it second and 10...

Playing the percentages. On average, no offense in history puts up 10 yds per down. So, the loss of a down is not as crucial as a 10 yd set back.

Looking at the percentages, Ravens were averaging 5.7 yds/play. The greater average yards needed per remaining downs, the greater the chance for defense to get off the field. (i.e. 2nd & 19 = 6.3 yds/play vs 3rd & 9 = 4.5 yds/play). So looking at the averages, if the Ravens were playing 4 down territory, then you could argue that at 3rd & 9, with two downs left averaging 5.7 yds per play (equals 11.4 yds), they may have better than a 50/50 chance to convert. But at 2nd & 19 their average is 5.7, netting an expected 16.1 yds, they likely have less than a 50/50 chance of converting.

That is an over simplification because the further you have to go, the offensive play book gets narrower. This gives the advantage to the defense. So from the above paragraph you would think that if it's only a 5 yard penalty, then the loss of down would be more beneficial. But when you have to go farther, the play calling is influenced and the defense gets the advantage.

Also, yards often come in chunks not consistent averages. 1yd, 3yd, 8yd, 2yd, 6yd... etc. So, by having 3 plays to go 15 yards instead of 10 yards, you can absorb that one chunk yard play. Make sense?


So looking at these things.... it is almost always more beneficial to take the yards instead of the loss of down. The only time I would say the loss of down is more beneficial is when you are backed up in the endzone and you are only getting 2-3 yards from the "half the distance to the goal" rule. However, in that sitution, being backed up against the endzone and the threat of a safety has it's own advantages, so you should still accept.