Pete Carroll defends his timeout before Rams’ game-clinching fourth down

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With less than two minutes to go in the fourth quarter today in Seattle, the Rams faced fourth-and-1 near midfield. They initially sent their punting unit onto the field, but after the Seahawks called a timeout, the Rams changed their minds, went for it on fourth down, and picked up the game-clinching conversion on a quarterback sneak.

So does that mean Seahawks coach Pete Carroll erred by calling the timeout? Should Carroll not have given Rams coach Sean McVay more time to think over the fourth down?

Not according to Carroll, who said he actually told the officials he wanted the timeout before they brought the chains out prior to the Rams’ fourth down. Carroll said that after the officials measured, he confirmed to them that he wanted the timeout, and he stands by that decision.

“The clock would have been running and we would have used the timeout, but because of the stoppage [for the chains] there, we get the timeout back, so we had another timeout,” Carroll said. “What would have happened there is they were going to wind the clock and I think there was 33 seconds on the [play] clock at 1:39. It would have taken us down to a minute, so it was worth using the timeout.”

When a reporter asked a follow-up about Carroll’s timeout usage, he seemed to get a little testy about it.

“I’m not quite sure why you’re asking that. I’m just trying to keep as much time on the clock as possible,” Carroll said.

Unfortunately for Carroll, McVay used the timeout to make a smart call to go for it on fourth down, and that ended any hope Carroll’s team had of a comeback win.

35 responses to “Pete Carroll defends his timeout before Rams’ game-clinching fourth down

  1. Seahawk fan here, dumbest move of the game cost you it. They have the punting unit out there, why give them extra time? Use that time out when your in control of the ball…I swear sometimes these coaches out think themselves…

  2. Carroll just makes some boneheaded decisions sometimes.
    In today’s fake football, no defense league, having the ball is the most important thing. If then opponent is willing to kick to you then let them.

  3. Smart call?? More like extremely gutsy call. I wouldn’t call it smart. A failure there gives the Seahawks the ball needing only around 10 yards to get into FG range, for the win.

  4. Carroll is just winging it now at his age. Wasted time before 2:00 warning letting clock run and not using his timeouts…..atleast 21 real time seconds. Then he turns around and feels precious seconds matter and gifts the leagues best young mind to second guess punting on 4th and an inch and all Pete could say was he wanted to save 33 seconds. Adam Sandler voice ‘you blew it!’ Just admit it. All you needed was a field goal. Wilson has gotten them in position in the past with a minute and a timeout in his sleep.

  5. The Rams decision to go for it was gutsy.

    It became smart when they got the 1st down. Had they been stuffed, everyone here would have been saying that McVay is too young and inexperienced to do the job.

  6. People will criticize because they lost, but it would have been weird not to use the time out. If they hadn’t used it, and then run out of time on the ensuing possession, he would have been eviscerated for wasting 30 seconds. Bottom line is that you’re always wrong when you lose.

  7. Time out was the right call. Rams going for it on 4th was risky. It worked out for the Rams but it might not have. That’s the nature of the game.

    Pete Carroll is a better coach than most commenters here. Present company excluded, of course.

  8. Yeah calling a slant instead of running Beast Mode Cowboy was a great call too. Failing to get 4th and Inches with Lendale White against Vince Running was a great call too. His choke move against Pete Stoyanovich was a great move too. His great defense in 2013 made him look like a genius.

  9. Pete is an idiot. Pete lost 30 seconds prior to the 2 minute warning for not understanding how to use timeouts. 2:42 left. Gurley runs for 2 yds. With 2 timeouts remaining AND the 2 minute warning, you ALWAYS call timeouts right away. Then Gurley goes for 7 to make it 3rd and 1. Call timeout. So now there’s 2:10 on the clock. You’re out of time outs but you have the 2 minute warning. So when Gurley doesn’t make it on 3rd and 1 making it 4th and 1, you have no timeouts but now have 2 minutes left on the clock.

    Pete is an idiot. Let’s the clock run to the 2 minute warning. then uses the 2 timeouts which burned 22 seconds that had the Rams punted, he’d have needed.

    Moot but how does a pro coach NOT know to use the timeouts prior to the 2 minute warning? and have the 2minute as the final timeout?

    He’s lost it

  10. Pete didn’t know what he was doing there at the end. When a coach is bypassing 4th and 1 inch and he has a 6’5″ QB that can just take snap and reach out in the air and simply get the inch……….you save your timeout and force them to either punt/fake punt/ try for offsides then take 5 yard penalty and punt and give you the ball back. He wasted time then tried to old man tunnel vision save time……all the while I’m guessing his team wasn’t ready for the fake punt or even them attempting to draw them offsides so the boca vista resident needed the timeout just to clear his own head.

  11. I was watching that game live and I couldn’t believe he called that timeout. McVay has a decision to make, and quickly since LA was out of timeouts. He decided to punt the ball and give Seattle a chance to win but then all of a sudden Carroll calls a timeout and gives him more time to decide?! I thought going for it was the right call because it gave you a chance to end the game by gaining just 6 inches. You have to think with either Goff or Gurley they’d be able to pick up the first down. This really reminded me of what happened right before the Malcolm Butler play in the Super Bowl where Belichick decided not to call a timeout and give Seattle time to go to the sideline and talk things over. With not a lot of time to really think about it they went with the pass play instead of the run which was the obvious choice. Sometimes forcing your opponent to make a quick decision is the best thing to do. Calling a timeout to allow your opponent more time to figure things out can be disastrous

  12. As a rams fan, i have to say i am thrilled to have pete carroll coaching my least favorite team.
    Maybe next week he will regale the fellas with some corny stories from his college days, like the time he and the boys all piled into a vw bug to go meet some chicks at the drive-in.
    The game has passed this jerk by. Please keep him employed, seahawks!

  13. Look at Pete’s expression when he was informed the Seahawks were behind by two points when he called the timeout. It’s obvious to me that Pete thought the Seahawks were still 2 points ahead. You can see him trying to count to two on his fingers during that line of questioning. Come on, Pete! One, Two. You don’t need a calculator.

  14. Every week there are 16 coaches who are geniuses and 16 coaches who are completes idiots. And there are thousands of us sitting on our sofas who are geniuses every Monday morning.

  15. How does he still have a job? including the SB pass from the 1, how many games is he directly responsible for giving away?

  16. Anyone who thinks you don’t take that timeout, doesn’t understand football. As soon as they were ready, the refs would have wound the clock. The Rams could then bleed the clock all the way down, take the delay of game, and let the best punter in the game pin them deep with a little over a minute. Plus Gurley had the first down on the second down run. The refs made a terrible spot.

  17. Anybody that thinks he made the wrong call here and in the superbowl are idiots. You play the percentages. Just because it doesn’t work out in your favor doesn’t mean it was the wrong call. As a coach you have to put your team in the best position to win. All these couch potatoes don’t know the 1st thing about coaching. Just shut up watch the game and go back working to working your 9-5.

  18. The bigger question is why the Cowboys were calling timeouts in overtime. It’s like they were saving time on the clock, but it was sudden death…

  19. The time out is not the reason Seattle lost. The defense simply could not stop the LAmbs from moving down the field all game long. It could not stop the winning field goal drive and it could not stop the LAmbs on 4th and 1. Normally no coach would go for it. But his players were confident that the Seattle D is so bad it could not stop the quarterback sneak.

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