Pete Carroll explains why he punted on fourth down
Pete Carroll decided to punt on a fourth-down play with under three minutes left in Sunday night’s playoff game, and his team never got the ball back. The Seattle Seahawks head coach was asked after the game why he decided to punt and shared his explanation.
“We were thinking about going for it in that sequence but not at 4th-and-11,” Carroll said. “We thought our odds were so low. We had all the clock, we had the time, we had all the opportunities to stop them to get the ball back. So we didn’t want to put it all on one play. If it were 4th-and-5 or 3 — we went through the whole discussion, but it winds up being a sack unfortunately.”
Carroll is suggesting that if Russell Wilson hadn’t been sacked on third down for a loss of six, they might have gone for it on fourth down in what would have been a shorter yardage situation. Instead, they punted and allowed the Packers to convert consecutive first downs on clutch third-down pass plays, including one that involved a controversial spot.
Most statistical analysis said punting was the wrong decision.
That's a big error for Pete Carroll.
Even with three timeouts left, there's a chance the #Seahawks never get the ball back in this game.
Punting cost them 8% pre-snap GWC vs. going for it.#SEAvsGB
— EdjSports (@edjsports) January 13, 2020
SEA decided to punt to GB from the SEA 36 on 4th & 11 with 2:41 remaining in the 4th while losing 23 to 28.
With a Surrender Index of 4.32, this punt ranks at the 86th percentile of cowardly punts of the 2019 season, and the 83rd percentile of all punts since 2009.
— Surrender Index (@surrender_index) January 13, 2020
That was a rough way for Seattle to lose. I almost always prefer to see a team go for it when trailing late rather than punt and risk never getting the ball back to end a game. Who wants to see their season end like that?