We all saw it, we all know what happened. With the Lombardi Trophy in reach, and the Seahawks in a position to win it, (Seattle Seahawks) offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell elected to call a slant play to Ricardo Lockette instead of going with the obvious choice and handing off to Marshawn Lynch.
As a result, Russell Wilson’s pass was intercepted by rookie Malcolm Butler and in the blink of an eye, the Seahawks had the Super Bowl snatched out of their waiting hands. The play call resulted in outrage amongst Seattle fans and, well, pretty much everyone. No one could quite figure out why on earth Bevell hadn’t decided to feed the beast. Even the Patriots players were surprised that the Seahawks hadn’t handed it off. I’m pretty sure everyone was wondering what was going through the part of Bevell’s brain where the mind is often found.
Almost immediately, Seattle fans began calling for Bevell’s head, myself included. The anger was only further ignited when Bevell placed the blame on Lockette instead of taking the blame himself like Wilson and Carroll had.
Despite all of this though, Bevell should not be fired. Even though he made the most boneheaded play call in NFL history, it is not worthy of firing Bevell. First and foremost, Seattle wouldn’t even be in that position if the defense doesn’t blow a 10 point lead for the first time basically ever with the Legion Of Boom in effect.
On top of that, Seattle may not even be in that position if Bevell doesn’t call a wheel route to Lynch earlier in that drive. Plus when it’s all said and done, Seattle has been to two straight Super Bowls and you don’t start firing coordinators after that. I’m far from a Bevell fan, but he hasn’t exactly had the easiest job while running the Seattle offense. Early in the season he had to deal with Percy Harvin, and how the prima donna needed the offense based around him to be happy meaning that Bevell had to completely change the way he called plays, just to keep the big star happy. Once the Seahawks traded Harvin, it let Bevell go back to the way that he wanted to run the offense, and since Harvin was shipped to the Jets, the Seahawks went 11-3.
On top of that, Bevell doesn’t have the greatest crop of wide receivers to work with Doug Baldwin being the top receiver. However, Bevell isn’t just getting off easy. His seat as coordinator needs to get a little warm, as making a call that may have cost your team a Super Bowl isn’t acceptable. Besides, it isn’t the first time Bevell has gone to a pass with only short yardage needed. The hope for the Seahawks and their fans is that they’ll supply him with some additional weapons this offseason, ideally a big play receiver, a durable offensive line and tight ends that can catch the ball every now and then. So at the end of the day, while the horrid call shouldn’t warrant Bevell’s firing, it definitely isn’t something to be brushed aside and it should be the cause of some more intensive scrutiny on some of his decisions when it comes to play calling.