Vance Joseph costs Broncos with unbelievably conservative decision
Vance Joseph cost the Denver Broncos their best shot at a win on Saturday night with an ultra conservative decision late in the game.
Joseph’s Broncos had a 4th-and-1 at the Cleveland 6 with five and a half minutes remaining in the game and his team down 17-13. Do you think that Joseph decided to go for it, knowing that this was his best chance at winning the game and staying alive in the playoff race? Or do you think he took a field goal to continue trailing in the game, risking not getting the ball back? Yup, if you went with Door No. 2, you are correct.
Joseph elected to kick a short field goal rather than try to punch it in and take the lead. Brandon McManus made his field goal to make it a 17-16 game.
And guess what happened immediately afterwards? The Browns ripped off a 40-yard run from Nick Chubb to get into field goal range. Cleveland ended up forcing Denver to burn all three of their timeouts before being stopped on 4th down, handing the ball over to the Broncos. Denver also turned the ball over on downs and lost 17-16.
If you have the ball at your opponent’s 6-yard line and only need one yard to give yourself a great shot at taking the lead, why in the world would you kick a field goal? Let me tell you all the reasons why that was dumb. You’re six yards away from taking the lead. You’re one yard away from giving yourself four tries at a touchdown. And if you believe in your defense so much that you have faith they will get a stop, then that’s all the more reason to go for it, because after the defense gets a stop, you get great field position and another chance to punch it in. Oh, and let’s also not forget that due to an ejection and injuries, the Broncos ran out of cornerbacks, so their defense was weaker than usual — all the more reason Joseph should have been more aggressive on offense.
The way Joseph handled the ending was horrible. What’s worse is that he’s made similarly terrible moves earlier this season.