When intentions are unclear, it’s difficult to assess decisions.
Take, for instance, the choice by Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores to go for two, rather than tie the game, after his team rallied to within 17-16 against the Washington Redskins with just six seconds left in regulation Sunday. And then the actual play that was called, that seemingly had little chance at success.
While it’s clear this season that ownership and front office are fine with lots and lots of losses, the coaches and players don’t have much to gain by deliberate tanking. Flores, in particular, is trying to show he’s a competent NFL coach. So this has always seemed more about the front office giving him little to work with, and then him attempting to instill the proper principles in whatever personnel he’s been provided.
With all of that said, Flores and his staff (especially the coordinators) have made some odd decisions this season, whether regarding the unconventional utilization of players in particular schemes (outside their comfort zones) or curious play calls. Then, of course, there was the matter of star cornerback Xavien Howard being held out Sunday after practicing all week with a sore knee; that had a direct impact on the game. That may have been a call made above Flores. The two-point conversion was a call made by Flores, and hand-picked offensive coordinator Chad O’Shea.
Was it the correct one?
Well, the throw behind the line of scrimmage to Kenyan Drake didn’t work. And the Redskins won. And the Dolphins lost. Which was bad. Or good. Depends on your perspective.
Here are some of the tweets of the moment:
Here's how it's going to go down. Ryan Fitzpatrick is going to lead Miami down for a touchdown with time expiring.
With very little time left on the clock, the Dolphins will go for the 2-point conversion.
Do they get it?
— Matthew Cannata (@CannataPFN) October 13, 2019
— Ethan J. Skolnick (@EthanJSkolnick) October 13, 2019
Last play from another view… pic.twitter.com/wUH7eJoSv6
— Miami Dolphins on Sports Illustrated (@DolphinMaven) October 13, 2019
I’m beyond happy. Just magic.
— Simon Clancy (@SiClancy) October 13, 2019
— josh houtz (@houtz) October 13, 2019
The #Dolphins get to the brink of their first win… and Kenyan Drake drops the screen pass on the 2-point conversion. Miami isn’t tanking, but they are still in line for No. 1.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 13, 2019
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) October 13, 2019
Kenyan Drake drops a pass on the 2 point conversion try and Washington gets its first win of the year, 17-16 over the Dolphins. Wow. What a win. pic.twitter.com/iOqm4CtQDK
— Matthew Berry (@MatthewBerryTMR) October 13, 2019
For more about the Dolphins’ loss, which dropped them 0-5 and kept them in prime position for the upcoming NFL draft, check out Craig Davis’ latest column: