His game management decisions have been terrible since the bye.
Think I’m nuts? Here’s some examples:
-This week against the Patriots, down by 7 with 6 minutes remaining, he has us punt on 4th and 5 from the Patriots 42. Awful call. We’re less than 10 yards away from field goal range at that point and time is running out. We were getting in a rhythm – the drive had started at our own 17. We ran the ball 4 times that drive for gains of 5, 16, 5, and 5 yards. Instead we punt and give them the choice of letting Brady throw to Moss and Welker against our rookie receivers or running the ball 3 times and forcing us to use our timeouts. They went the latter route and we wound up with no time outs left.
-This week against the Patriots, down by 10 with 1:09 remaining. No timeouts left. What do we do? Run, short pass, short pass, short pass, short pass. Game over. What is up with that? Not a single shot downfield? No Hail Mary? What’s the worst that happens, a pick 6 and we end up losing by 17 instead of 10?
-Last week against the Jets. Just scored, so it’s 30-19. That’s an 11-point difference. It can be made up with one TD plus 2-pt conversion and one field goal. An extra point would make it a 12-point difference. The only way that can be made up in 2 scores would be 2 TDs with extra points. A 2-pt conversion would make it a 13-point difference. That can also be made up in 2 scores with 2 TDs with extra points. So the choice is: go for the sure thing (extra point, difference can be made up in 2 scores with 2 TDs) or gamble for a 13-point lead, which can be made up the exact same way. Sparano chooses to go for 2.
-Week before against NO. Timeout before halftime. Enough said.
-Week before against NO. 4th quarter. NO has managed to work our lead down to only 3 points. Time for a long, Ronnie and Ricky-heavy, time consuming drive to kill their momentum. What plays are called? Pass, pass, pass, punt. They score, putting them up by 4. Now it must be time to take the momentum back with a time-consuming drive; after all, a TD puts us back in the lead. What plays are called? Pass, pass, pass, punt.
-Week before against NO. 4th quarter. Down by 12. Only 1:53 left and 2 timeouts. We need 2 TDs and fast. Time for some throws downfield, right? Plays called: run, short pass, short pass, short pass, short pass, short pass nowhere near the sideline, short pass, FINALLY A DEEP PASS, short pass, game over. Again, what’s up with the lack of testicles in the play calling? We need the big play down by 12 with 1:53 left.
Maybe some of the bad play calls were made by Henning, but Sparano ultimately bears responsibility for game management. And if it wasn’t for Ginn’s kickoff returns, Sparano’s poor game management would have resulted in us going 0-3 since the bye.