The New Orleans Saints looked to be sunk when Marshawn Lynch scored with 2:40 left, giving the Seattle Seahawks a 23-8 lead. (Never mind that Lynch should have fallen down at the 1-yard line, with the Saints out of timeouts.)
But somehow the Saints raced downfield, scored a touchdown in a two-minute drive and incredibly recovered the onsides kick with 26 seconds left with a chance to send this one — improbably — to overtime.
Drew Brees moved the ball to the their 49-yard line, and with 11 seconds left the Saints had time enough to run at least two plays. That strategy, however, might not have been told to Marques Colston.
Brees hit Colston on a quick pass on the sideline, and he could have stepped out of bounds with five seconds left to set up a Hail Mary attempt on the Seattle side of the field. Whoops.
Colston had another strategy — throw the ball forward in a last-ditch attempt to keep the ball alive. Sorry, but what?! Number one, the idea to do it was terrible; two, the attempt wasn't even close to being parallel or behind the line of scrimmage. That puppy must have gone seven yards forward to where Colston was standing when he threw it aimlessly across the field. No need to run 14 replays, a la Frank Wycheck and the Music City Miracle.
Payton didn't appear too thrilled to be asked about the play after the game.
Payton on the Colston lateral: "We'll look at the tape. Next question."
— Larry Holder (@LarryHolder) January 12, 2014
It was just dumb. And given the way that Payton coached, Brees played (and managed the clock and his timeouts), perhaps it just wasn't in the cards for the Saints to send this one to OT.
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