Game Changers: Dueling Kickers in Miami

The Situations

Jets at Dolphins, Week 3

The Plays

The Result

The Dolphins had to start overtime on defense, but they ended up getting the ball back and driving down the field for a chance to win the game. Instead, kicker Dan Carpenter botched a 48-yard field goal, giving the ball back to the Jets with decent field position. Shortly after a successful deep ball to Santonio Holmes, Nick Folk was able to come into the game and secure a Jets' victory.

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3 Responses to “Game Changers: Dueling Kickers in Miami”

  1. Independent George says:

    If you remove psychology from the equation, is "icing" the kicker the equivalent of the Monty Hall problem? That is, you're giving the kicker two chances to hit instead of one, even if the first one doesn't count?

  2. Eddie says:

    I don't think so, since the kicker only has one chance to hit it, the first kick on which a timeout is not called. So minus psychology, it doesn't matter if you call a timeout or not, the probability of the kicker making it stays the same.

    It's not same, because you aren't calling the timeout only when you know the kicker is going to make the field goal. This is the key assumption in the monty hall problem, that monty is acting with complete knowledge, and will never open a "winning" door. Without this assumption, there is no advantage to switching, just like there is no advantage to calling a timeout.

  3. Jonathan says:

    Kickers are slightly more accurate on the second attempt. Coaches overrate the psychology, and underrate the muscle memory inherent in giving the kicker a free practice kick from the exact spot that he'll be kicking the real kick. That's an insane concession, no matter how minor it is.

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