Saturday, September 08, 2007

"Punting is good," saith the coach

In an interview with Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel Packers beat writer, Bob McGinn, Head Coach Mike McCarthy stated -- and I am not making this up -- "Punting is good." Now, it's important to understand the context of this remark. Otherwise you might mistake it for the same kind of gibberish a certain high school golf coach (and vice principal!) told his team once upon a time -- and, again, I am not making this up -- "Bogey golf is winning golf." OK, there is no context for that statement. But does it really need one? It stands on its own as one of those legendary tokens of high school sporting lore.

But there is a context for McCarthy's statement. He was talking about the reminder the coaching staff gives to Brett each week relative to a completion on third down. The rest of the statement helps explain: "For as simple as it sounds (punting is good), it's true. It's even more so with the ability that our defense has, particularly in the play-making category. We're asking him (Brett) to make more decisions at the line than he has in the past. He needs to keep himself in a good play. Not try to make the great play all the time. One thing we do well with the perimeter group is yards after the catch. The completion percentage has to go way up. We can't operate at 56%. That's not cutting it. That's how he's being coached."

OK, now we can see the line of thought. If one thinks points might be hard to come by in some games, don't force things...play field position...let the defense control the tempo...pick your shots for scores. Makes sense. Still, whether this axiom -- "punting is good" -- will ever come to rival the motto of Faber College remains to be seen. Remember that one? "Knowledge is good." Can't argue with that one either.

There were more subjects covered in the interview, of course. Some interesting comments from the coach. If you want to read the interview in its entirety, you can find it here.

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