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Keep the points or take the first down?

Originally posted by ktate14:
I don't know..the decision was mind boggling to me..but i can see it both ways though..you look on the other side and see Dallas has a kicker that's struggling and missed a 21 yarder so you take the points and hope your defense can come up with a stop...it just didn't work out...I was highly upset and i keep thinking of 2 plays:

1. The decision not to take the first down on the penalty and keep the 3pts

2. The offside penalty on Brooks?? WTF was that!! They should of been off the field but instead they get the first down on the next play and drive for a TD ..smh..that was a HORRIBE CALL!

The penalty on Brooks right before the half where the Niners could have gone into the locker room up by 14pts instead they blew it. This was the larger mistake that ultimately cost the game.
Harbaugh decision to keep points was just fine but it is obvious that part of his thinking is that he does not have confidence in Alex Smith. Anyway you cut it Harbaugh does not have confidence in Alex Smith but the game was not lost by Smith. The secondary gave up some big plays yesterday after playing well the first 3 quarters. The defensive coaches have to fix the secondary but long term Alex Smith is a liability.
Originally posted by nickbradley:
I must be the only one who understands football, because it seems like I'm the only person supporting the Harbaugh decision. People who are angry simply do not understand the calculation Harbaugh made, and Bill Belichick would have made this decision with our team.

Simply put, the odds of scoring a touchdown were lower than the chance that we miss the make-up field goal, which is about 30% for Akers with 40-49 yard attempts...probably higher outdoors and so-so turf that had caused a lot of slippage during the game.

It was a PERFECT DECISION, a rational decision, a decision that a software program with perfect information would have made. I CHALLENGE ANYONE to make the case that we were more likely to score a touchdown than miss the follow-up.

Here's backup for the pro-Harbaugh case:

1. It's two scores that matters, not 2 touchdowns



Very good post. Harbaugh made the right decision. Your first point says it all. Had he taken the points off the board and we don't get a TD or another FG and Dallas ties the score with a TD and wins the game on a FG with regulation running out people would be screaming " HE SHOULD NEVER HAVE TAKEN THE POINTS OFF THE BOARD".

Harbaugh made the right call. It's too bad you can't say the same about Fangio.
Agree with your assessment NIck. Harbaugh played the odds and lost. If he had taken the points off the board and gone three and out, even with another FG and three points, the team would have lost. Romo allowed time to tick off and managed the game better than I thought he was capable of doing, so Dallas still would have scored and won the game.

I like the comment about Singletary's emotional method of losing. Don't need that fake energy out there on the field.
Originally posted by 49ersswagger:
worst decision in harbaugh young coaching career you are supposed to take the 15 yrds and the 1st down its a no brainer alex had a qb rating of 99.1 let him throw the damn ball Vernon Davis led nfl in tds 2 years ago he only had 2 receptions used mostly as a blocker against D. Ware and delanie walker was a mismatch on a dallas olb spencer on his TD never went back to that play even kyle williams looked great on his td catch never threw another ball to him we have a total of 200yrd offense in back to back weeks thats is possibly the worst offense in the nfl we have to stay aggressive I am sick of conservative playcalling worst case scenerio if u have that little faith in ur offense take penalty run 3 frank gore runs if we gets 1st down great if not at least we take more time of clock and prevent 4th qtr dallas comeback

Smith had a QB rating of 99 in a single-read offense. No time to look elsewhere.
Originally posted by 49erMike:
Finally someone that's thinking rationally. I wonder if the fans who think Harbaugh made the wrong decision also think that an incentive laden contract is better than guaranteed money?

The people who think it was a bad decision are the same ones who were cheering a new contract for a rapidly declining Frank Gore.
Originally posted by Archie:
Harbaugh decision to keep points was just fine but it is obvious that part of his thinking is that he does not have confidence in Alex Smith. Anyway you cut it Harbaugh does not have confidence in Alex Smith but the game was not lost by Smith. The secondary gave up some big plays yesterday after playing well the first 3 quarters. The defensive coaches have to fix the secondary but long term Alex Smith is a liability.

It's not confidence in Smith -- it's the fact that the O-line is giving up a sack every 6 plays, can't run block, and if giving up a ton of pressure. Basically the only time we completed a non-screen play was when we picked up a blitz and somebody was wide open...except for the Walker TD.
Originally posted by Archie:
Harbaugh decision to keep points was just fine but it is obvious that part of his thinking is that he does not have confidence in Alex Smith. Anyway you cut it Harbaugh does not have confidence in Alex Smith but the game was not lost by Smith. The secondary gave up some big plays yesterday after playing well the first 3 quarters. The defensive coaches have to fix the secondary but long term Alex Smith is a liability.

It is about the offensive line, not Smith. They give him time, he produces.
Originally posted by Memphis9er:
It is about the offensive line, not Smith. They give him time, he produces.

Yes. Furthermore, he gets time to throw, he hits 2nd and 3rd options...and he gets confident as the game goes on.
Originally posted by nickbradley:
The people who think it was a bad decision are the same ones who were cheering a new contract for a rapidly declining Frank Gore.

Gore is fine, it is the offensive line that is struggling.
Originally posted by Memphis9er:
Gore is fine, it is the offensive line that is struggling.

Our O-line is just terrible.
Originally posted by Memphis9er:
Gore is fine, it is the offensive line that is struggling.

The O-line is struggling, but Gore used to make lemonade out of lemons like all great backs except for Emmitt Smith have done.
I'm not saying it was a bad decision but why not grind out the clock more and still come away with points? I have a lot more trust in our offense when they're in the red zone. Alex is what...now 32 TDs and 1 INT in the redzone for his career? He's thrown 0 red zone INTs since 2005. I just feel like if you're QB is that "money" in the RZ...let him do his thing down there. Now if we are on the 40 or 50 or whatever...fine.

I don't know. There is still no excuse for the secondary biting as much as they did.
Originally posted by LambdaChi49:
I'm not saying it was a bad decision but why not grind out the clock more and still come away with points? I have a lot more trust in our offense when they're in the red zone. Alex is what...now 32 TDs and 1 INT in the redzone for his career? He's thrown 0 red zone INTs since 2005. I just feel like if you're QB is that "money" in the RZ...let him do his thing down there. Now if we are on the 40 or 50 or whatever...fine.

I don't know. There is still no excuse for the secondary biting as much as they did.

You don't start running the clock out with 11 minutes left. Especially if you're running the ball for 2 - 2.5 yards per carry. Little upside, heavy downside.
At the time I was fine with keeping the points and making it a 2 score game. I can understand both sides of the debate but completely get Harbaugh's logic on this one. Going up 2 scores in the 4th quarter and pinning the other team back on their 20 yard line isnt a bad call especially when your defense has played well and the opposing QB has been hurt. It didnt work out. So be it.

It isnt the worst decision EVER as some people want to claim. Also.. to the OP.. no you arent the only person who understands the game of football.