When Icing the Kicker Goes Wrong

Comments

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*Pete
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(4) Ha Hah!!!

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I'm no expert, but I did watch some of the commentary. I'd say the smart money is that Carroll wasn't pretending he didn't make the timeout call. He was complaining to the ref that the practice kick came completely after the whistle and they shouldn't have been allowed to take that.

But, the commentator continued, there isn't actually any rule against taking that practice kick during a timeout. Which brings me to a point that is a constant source of irritation:

Why are the NFL rules so fucking complicated? Why do they change every damned year? What kind of game, not in virtual cyberspace, needs that many rules? How come you can't own a copy of the actual damned rulebook? And if you could, would you need a wheelbarrow to carry it around in?

I used to think baseball was complicated, but football is giving Calvinball a run for the money.
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trick question!
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@3 I'm with you. He called the timeout, and then complained that the Falcons should have been called for a delay of game penalty for taking the practice kick after the whistle was blown. And that was clearly a practice kick. Everybody else had stopped playing.

But icing the kicker is stupid. As was Carroll's play calling in the red zone during the first half.
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I think icing the kicker is a coin flip really, but I'm happy because pete carrol is a cheating, consequence-dodging dolt.
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Now you guys know how we Bears fans feel!
Hmm, challenging game, fail on 4th and 1 rather than take the field goal early in the game, end up losing at the last minute because the defense faded at the end of the game? NOW the shoe is on the other foot. Ha HA! (And I was pulling for the Hawks too.)
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It's so cute when Slog writers pretend to care about football.
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@3, 5: You guys must not watch much football, because every time a kicker gets iced, he takes that kick. Every. Single. Time. No one has ever complained until Cheat Carroll lost a game because of it. This is WAY different than Tucker literally taking a practice kick between OT periods in the Denver-Baltimore game. That should be disallowed, but this is not even close to the same scenario

The fact is, when the kicker is iced, often the snap comes off less than a second after the coach asks the ref, but before the whistle blows. Therefore, the kicker has already started his approach, and you are basically asking the kicker to risk injury to pull up and not finish his procedure. Furthermore, players are instructed to play through the whistle on important plays to lessen the risk of confusion or referee error. Football has always been this way.

Pete Carroll is a lifelong cheater, and a poor sportsman who is proud of his cheating, and publicly claims he should have the right to cheat (in so many words). I am talking mostly of his time before the NFL. But Carroll always has a cheap and dirty team, because he coaches them to cheat to win.

I mean, look at Sherman: dirty player, poor sportsman, cheats on and off the field. He is Carroll's dream player.

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@9 I never implied that it should have been called for delay of game. Merely that this is what Carroll was asking for. Yes, they follow through on these iced kicks all the time.
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@10: I see, when you said it was "clearly a practice kick" I thought you were agreeing with Carroll's interpretation, not just talking literally.

On another note, the NFL claims that icing the kicker does not work at all, except there appears to be a slight (barely statistically relevant) increase in missed kicks during the playoffs when icing the kicker.

However, I would imagine that slight correlation is more the result of small sample sizes and unscientific methods. Or just the fact that more kicks miss in the playoffs due to the pressure and willingness to risk longer kicks.
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I wouldn't trust Bleacher Report, they gave the drafting of Russell Wilson a solid F, all because he was too short to be a quarter back. Its basically the RedState of sports sites. Lots of talk and wild assumptions, with almost nothing to back up it up.
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@3: http://www.nfl.com/rulebook ?

They used to have a pocket-sized rulebook you could buy, but I don't think they've released one of those since maybe 2009.
14
would it have been a bad idea to try a 65 yard field goal instead of the hail mary? somebody made a 55 yarder in the pats game, with room to spare.
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@14: Ryan Longwell (despite his surname) cannot kick long field goals.

And I'm not really upset about Carroll icing the kicker. I'm pissed that the defense allowed the Falcons to go 40 yards in 18 seconds (this coming after almost the exact same thing happened at the end of the Seahawks/Bears game earlier this year).

I feel bad for Russell Wilson. That little dude played an AMAZING game, just to be let down by his supposedly vaunted defense.
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Icing the kicker - or whatever is a sideshow. Carroll blew the game in the 1st half when he went for it on 4th and short. They could have kicked an easy field goal and got the points. (And Seattle would be preparing for San Francisco)
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"Icing the kicker" doesn't work. Never has. It's a stupid superstition that coaches do because they're not very bright. It doesn't work. It's like wearing your socks inside out because that one time that one team won a game when it happened. Superstition.
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@13 Thanks. Ummm... Have you read that thing? It looks like over 5,000 lines of rules! (Not including the preface, table of contents, index or appendices.)

I think that's more rules than baseball, hockey, basketball, soccer, rugby and cricket, combined.
19
There are kickers that can be iced, but they don't tend to play for #1 seeds, at least not for long. Matt Bryant isn't one of those kickers, and certainly not at home in a dome.
Carroll was hoping to call the TO early enough so that no snap & kick would happen. The Falcons were smart to proceed, though missing that practice kick isn't a good omen. There have been a few cases where the practice kick is good, but the real one misses. It's a last ditch effot, which are rarely successful by nature.

The current NFL wisdom says to call that timeout, since you can't use them after the game. Pete was going by the book, such as it is.

Let's not forget Atlanta coach Mike Smith calling his last timeout to set up the field goal with way too much time left on the clock. The replay shows him running to the official in a panic, not looking at the clock, and calling timeout with 12 seconds left instead of 4. That almost turned out to be the biggest timeout fiasco in playoff history, and it was because of not "going by the book".
Carroll made plenty of mistakes, but the last timeout wasn't one of them.
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@9: Usually the timeout is called just before the ball is snapped. In this case it was called well before, and they followed through anyway. That was Carroll's (weak) argument.

(And yes, I watch a lot of football.)
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@16, completely agree. There was no reason to be that desparate that early. They should have been down 20-6 at the half. After a few weeks of not making risky calls, Sneaky Pete was back thinking he was smarter than the stats, and playing his stupid hunches. If he trusted the team, we'd be preparing moving on. Yet another missed opportunity this year.
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Eli (@9), did you actually read that second linked article? He at no time claims that he didn't call the timeout. His entire argument with the referees was over whether or not they were going to assess a penalty on Atlanta's kicker for the practice kick.

If they claimed before the game they weren't going to allow it, then he's right to ask them to assess a penalty. He didn't get the call but I see no reason for him to let it go without argument.
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What an amazing comeback, huh? Hold your heads high, Seahawks fans. We can teach Lynch to hang onto the ball. We can heal Clemmons. Turbin finally looked like the stud he can become.

The Hawks had an amazing season even after holding Wilson back for the first four or five games. Every star quarterback in the league is going to think twice before throwing an egg against Sherman, Browner and Earl Thomas.

This is a team poised to make history. The best part of the NFL? There's always next season.

I had more fun watching the Hawks this year than I have in a decade, and that includes the '05 Superbowl season. Alexander versus Lynch? No question. Hassleback versus Wilson's potential? Whatevs.

Plus, we get to watch the 49ers win the Superbowl now. They're kind of like a home team, right?
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As others have said, the real issue is the two opportunities for field goals in the first half that were ignored. That sucked.

I'm fairly sure "icing the kicker" was invented as a way to create an additional slot for advertising.
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@24 -- like the two minute warning?
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Mike Carroll?
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@23: You had me until Niners and Super Bowl. Fuck the Niners. Jim Harbaugh is an asshole and Kaepernik is tatted up in bible verses.
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@24: they only had one shot at a field goal in the first half. At the end of the half, once Wilson was sacked on 3rd down, there wasn't enough time left to get the kicking unit on the field.
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@29 -- I'd like to shove that pen Harbaugh wears straight up the middle, if you know what I mean.

I didn't grow up here. I root for the Oilers and I draft Earl Motherfucking Campbell every fantasy season.
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@25: The two minute warning is a holdover from the days when there were not game clocks all over the field and all the coaches and players were wired with earpieces.

Because back then, the coaches actually needed a warning when the half was expiring.

This is essentially the same reason the clock stops on an incomplete pass. They had to go retrieve the ball, and you can not have the clock ticking while you wait, or else teams could burn the clock just by lobbing long balls out of bounds.

There is no actual reason for either to exist now, but they have become part of the fabric of the game, and strategies now revolve around them.