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The score was tied with under 30 seconds remaining, and the Dallas Cowboys were within field goal range to beat the Chargers. Precious seconds ticked off the clock, and everyone watching scratched their heads wondering why the Cowboys weren’t either:
A.) Calling a play to make Greg Zuerlein’s kick easier
B.) Calling a timeout to figure out what they’re doing
The answer is that the Cowboys head coach is Mike McCarthy who crafts new excuses for clock mismanagement every year. As you can imagine, he delivered yet another excuse.
— Around The NFL (@AroundTheNFL) September 20, 2021
“The clock situation was just different,” McCarthy said, via the official game transcript. “I’ve never had a clock go off the board on me like that. In the second down, we’re trying to chip away and get a shorter field goal. We were going to attempt a third-down play, kicking on the fourth was the time frame we were in. I think 17 seconds. We were right on the threshold. When you get in these 2-minute [situations], you have thresholds — one minute, 30 seconds, 17 seconds — so we were right at the threshold there of our whole operation. We had personnel — one of our players came off who shouldn’t have come off — and just communication errors.”
He goes on to pretend they had a plan.
“We were just going to run it down, but the clock I was watching came off the board. Then, the clock [offensive coordinator] Kellen [Moore] had with the camera — the camera was great from up top, and obviously, you want to call that time off between three and four seconds.”