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Chargers’ Brandon Staley faces criticism for calling timeout with possible tie scenario in play


Los Angeles Chargers coach Brandon Staley faced some scrutiny for his decision to call a timeout in overtime against the Las Vegas Raiders with 38 seconds left in the game.

The timeout stopped the clock as the game was looking like it was going to be a tie. A tie between both teams would have secured a playoff spot for both teams. 

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Las Vegas Raiders kicker Daniel Carlson, center, celebrates after kicking the game-winning field goal against the Los Angeles Chargers during overtime of an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in Las Vegas.

Las Vegas Raiders kicker Daniel Carlson, center, celebrates after kicking the game-winning field goal against the Los Angeles Chargers during overtime of an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in Las Vegas.
(AP Photo/Ellen Schmidt)

The Raiders ran the ball two straight times with Josh Jacobs right after the 2-minute warning. It appeared the game was heading toward a tie until Staley called the timeout. Jacobs would run the ball once more to set up a Daniel Carlson field goal. The Raiders ran the ball down to 2 seconds and called a timeout. Carlson hit the 47-yard field to send the Raiders to the playoffs.

NBC broadcasters Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth were confused by the timeout.

“What?” Collinsworth exclaimed while Michaels hummed.

RAIDERS TOP CHARGERS IN OT THRILLER TO CLINCH PLAYOFF SPOT, NARROWLY AVOID WILD TIE SCENARIO

“I think the Raiders were playing to get it down to either a field goal or just let the clock run out and the Chargers took the timeout,” Collinsworth said.

Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) walks off the field after the Los Angeles Chargers lost to the Las Vegas Raiders in overtime of an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in Las Vegas.

Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) walks off the field after the Los Angeles Chargers lost to the Las Vegas Raiders in overtime of an NFL football game, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in Las Vegas.
(AP Photo/David Becker)

Michaels added: “I’m trying to process this myself.”

On social media, NFL fans were just as confused.

After Carlson’s field goal to win the game 35-32, Derek Carr told NBC’s Michelle Tafoya the decision for the Chargers to run the ball changed their strategy.

Los Angeles Chargers head coach Brandon Staley kneels on the sideline during the second half of an NFL football game against the Las Vegas Raiders, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in Las Vegas.

Los Angeles Chargers head coach Brandon Staley kneels on the sideline during the second half of an NFL football game against the Las Vegas Raiders, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2022, in Las Vegas.
(AP Photo/David Becker)

Staley told reporters after the game he wanted to get the right defensive package on the field knowing Las Vegas was going to likely run the ball.

Raiders coach Rich Bisaccia said they thought about just winding the clock down before getting a big run and getting into an “advantageous” field goal position. 

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The Raiders are now in the playoffs and the Chargers are starting their offseason.



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