When Pete Carroll threw a late challenge flag against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, many fans were nonplussed about the Seahawks Head Coach “wasting” a timeout. It appeared that there could have been offensive pass interference on Mike Evans during a 23-yard gain as Seattle led 34-27 with a little more than 3 minutes on the clock in regulation, but few expected it to be overturned because few PI penalties have been this season.
My thought on Carroll’s continuing challenges of pass interference though is that the point was not always to win. It’s a new rule, it’s important to test it out. Carroll has already won one challenge this season on PI that nobody expected him to win. The Seahawks also had three timeouts remaining and little thought that they’d need them at that point — not that that thought hasn’t bitten them in the past.
But after the game, Carroll confirmed that he expected the call on the field to also be confirmed or held up.
Pete Carroll said he knew he wasn’t going to win this challenge. He said he threw the flag to prove a point that these calls won’t be overturned.— Joe Fann (@Joe_Fann) November 4, 2019
I asked: “Is proving a point worth losing a timeout late in the fourth quarter?”
Carroll, while smiling: “We didn’t need it.”
Joe Fann of NBC Sports asked Carroll if losing the timeout was worth it just to prove a point, and Carroll reiterated that he cares little about timeouts. Carroll followed up by saying that it’s worth it to lose challenges because the NFL is letting receivers and corners play more with fewer flags thrown.
Only a couple more months until a team wins or loses a playoff game because of a DPI or OPI challenge. Will Carroll be involved in that game too? He’s certainly the coach most likely to be.