Todd Bowles’ decision-making against the Steelers today was something unseen in the NFL in a long time.
The last coach to punt on 4th and 2 at midfield, down 2 scores with <8 min left--Brad Childress 2006 https://t.co/koCe9QXk1n— Jason Lisk (@JasonLisk) October 9, 2016
Whenever you can say, “A coach hasn’t managed a game like this since Brad Childress, you’ve got problems. Childress was not exactly a master chess player when it comes to running a game.
Under any circumstances, this was a bad decision, but for this move to even make a shred of sense, you have to be confident your defense can get a quick three and out. The Jets forced two three and outs in the entire game. There was no way the defense could be trusted to get the ball back quickly for the offense.
Even if you can trust your defense, needing two scores in such a short time means that you have to go for the first down. You are running out of opportunities to score. You can’t just give one away.
I’m not saying Bowles’ job should be in jeopardy. I’m not even definitively saying he’s a bad coach. This was really, really poor game management, though.