Frank Reich was clearly a case of trying way too hard given the circumstances.
Reich was the subject of much chagrin on social media for his decision-making in the Colts playoff loss to the Buffalo Bills on Saturday afternoon, and for good reason. The former Eagles assistant is among the better coaches in the NFL, so I’m typically not in good standing to criticize him. He typically blends new-age, analytical thinking with the common sense ways of old — the standards of being an NFL head coach.
Yet, it appears the latter went out the window on Saturday. Reich embraced his team’s role as the underdog, at times even insulting their chances at coming away with victory. Second guessing is a dangerous game, but had he merely played matters straight up, Reich’s Colts very well might have done more than just scare the AFC’s No. 2 seed. Instead, Indianapolis is heading home despite an admirable effort on the road.
The bad decisions speak for themselves:
3. Fourth down consistency
Reich punted twice on the Bills side of the field. He went for it on what would’ve been a chip-shot field goal. He then decided to make up for that bad decision by kicking on a toss-up fourth down call later in the game, which resulted in a Rodrigo Blankenship missed field goal. The question here is simple: Is Reich aggressive or settling?
Anybody got a timeline where you called out Frank Reich BEFORE their fourth down and two-point failures?
— Jerry McDonald (@Jerrymcd) January 9, 2021
Reich is among the best playmaking minds in football, so it’s odd to see him wavering on confidence in his own offense. With a veteran quarterback in Philip Rivers, a solid receiving corps an Jonathan Taylor in the backfield, it makes sense that Reich would remain aggressive with this unit. But be consistent.