John Harbaugh: “Clear analytical decisions” to go for two three times

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Ravens head coach John Harbaugh went for two after three of the team’s four touchdowns in Sunday’s 33-28 loss to the Chiefs and the team’s failure to convert any of those tries led to questions about his approach after the game was over.

Harbaugh said the team made “clear analytical decisions” to both go for two and go for it on four fourth downs over the course of the game. They converted three of them, but the one failure left the Chiefs with the ball in Ravens territory.

Harbaugh said “absolutely not” if he second guessed any of those calls.

“I could just tell you analytically, like if you look at the numbers, it’s not even close,” Harbaugh said, via “So you understand in terms of the percentage of chances to win the game. I’m just telling you. That’s what the analytics say. That’s what it says. That’s how it works. But it wouldn’t even matter. We believe in our offense, and we’re going to try and get as many first downs as we can. I think it led to a touchdown the very first time, did it not? We’ll keep doing it whenever it suits us, whatever makes the most sense. We’re not going into it blind. We got the numbers. We know what we’re doing. That was the plan.”

The Ravens couldn’t put up enough points to get a win in Kansas City, but it doesn’t sound like the outcome is going to shake Harbaugh’s belief in his process.

23 responses to “John Harbaugh: “Clear analytical decisions” to go for two three times

  1. Lay off of Harbaugh teh poor guy often doesn’t even understand the rules. There’s no way he’s the one making any decisions based on analytics, they are being pumped into his head set by someone that count without using their fingers and toes.

  2. The people who are criticizing Harbaugh for going for two and going for it are the same people who stand on 16 when the dealer is showing a face card.


    But Harbaugh took a hit on two face cards.

    Three times.

  3. What was the coach supposed to do. It was evident Lamar wasn’t able to throw past 10 yards with any accuracy and the ONLY GAME he has is to run. You gotta get points while you have the ball because scoring opportunities were few and far between with Lamar behind center.

  4. This is the problem with analytics. They don’t exist in a vacuum. Even if a play is more statistically advantageous you have to read the game, your team, the opposition. This is especially problematic on 2 point conversions because you often end up chasing those points. Early on just kick the extra point and pick your spots for going for two.

  5. Harbaugh afraid to use the best kicker in league history. Until it comes down to a stupid “drop kick.” And this guy is supposed to be special teams guru?

    Bottom line, he choked against his big bad mentor in Andy Reid just like last year.

    He lucked into Lamar Jackson. If Flacco hadn’t gotten hurt last year flacco would still be the QB no matter how badly he played. Harbaugh needs to get out of the way.

  6. So after having a year of tape on Mahomes and knowing Reid’s tendencies, opposing coaches (especially those having worked under Reid in the past) know that they can’t stop the Mahome’s juggernaut and KC is going to score at least 30 points every game.

    All you can do is go for it on 4th and short and go for an extra, extra point after any TD you score, because ~

    Mahomes is going to be on the field soon, with his four game breakers to sling passes at.

    Chief’s offense resembles Peyton’s offense with the Colts & Broncos and all opponents knew they were in a track-meet every single game.

    Run Harbaugh out of Baltimore, go ahead. He’ll have his pick of jobs inside of a week.

  7. Harbaugh is a very good coach, but when you’re on the road, take the points. Had we just taken the PATs, it would have put more pressure on KC as it would have been a tighter score throughout. This loss is totally on the coaches and I hope they realize that and learn from this mistake. Now it’s time to prepare to DESTROY the Browns.

  8. 96 yards or 50 yards. Mahomes is going to score. Why punt, take the risk on getting the 4th down on a questionable defense. Just happens some questions were answered about the Chiefs defense. It is improving.

  9. This is the same argument Pete Carroll gave for letting Wilson throw instead of handing off to Beastmode in the Super Bowl loss to the Patriots. Everyone criticized him when history showed in that down and distance against that defense the play with the higher percentage of success was the pass. It didn’t work out but was actually a good call. If the data Harbaugh has says they have a high probability of moving two yards on a 4th and 2 or 2pt conversion then so be it.

    I have no problem with what transpired. For the first time in a long time I am excited when the offense is on the field and scared when the defense is on the field. This was an AFC team predicted to be in the championship game again. The offense put up 28 points which usually can win a game, the problem is the defense let KC score 33.

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