Monday, October 29, 2007

The quit instinct

Patriots' coach Bill Belicheat is right. If you don't want to get embarrassed, then play harder:

"I've been coaching too long," Belichick said. "I remember being on that side. When I was coaching defense it was my job to keep the score down, not theirs. When you're playing defense it's your job to stop them. It's not [the offense's] job to not score. It's like I tell the offense, what the [bleep] do you think I send you guys out there for? To punt? We have a punt team for that. That's not your job. Your job is to go out there and score points. If you come off the field and you haven't scored points you haven't done your job."

Continuing to play hard and scoring is not insulting the other team; what would be an insult is a punt on first down. The reason teams get spanked so badly, like the Redskins were yesterday, is because their players quit. Kicking them while they're lying down is a salient and well-earned lesson for them.

My soccer team lost 10-3 this weekend to an inferior team for two reasons. One, our backup goalie, who started, has unfortunately developed the soccer version of the yips and literally cannot stop anything. He was letting balls go in that were shot from 35 meters out and for which he was in position. The second reason is that several players quit once they saw that our goalie was hopeless and the manager wasn't going to take him out.

We scored first, then they scored about 10 seconds later when our keeper failed to clear an easy ball. We scored again and then our keeper let in a simple shot he should have blocked. He then allowed two more ridiculous goals; I got a goal and then earned a penalty, which unfortunately our star midfielder missed. But it was 4-3, we were putting on tons of pressure, and then our keeper simply missed the ball when trying to kick it and let it roll in. 5-3.

At that point, half our players pretty much quit. It went from 5-3 to 10-3 in the last ten minutes. Is that the other team's fault for getting excited and pouring it on, taking crazy shots from near midfield because they knew that our poor keeper would probably let it in? (And he did.) No! It was our keeper's fault, our manager's fault for not substituting him after the second goal when it became abundantly clear that something has gone psychologically wrong with the unfortunate guy, and it was the team's fault for quitting and allowing the score to get out of hand.

I hope Belicheat and company continue to try pouring it on. Perhaps that will convince these highly paid professionals to actually earn their pay for a full 60 minutes of game time.


Post a Comment

Rules of the blog
Please do not comment as "Anonymous". Comments by "Anonymous" will be spammed.

<< Home

Newer Posts Older Posts