Inside The Bills

Marrone on challenge philosophy

Posted by Chris Brown on September 14, 2013 – 12:36 pm

Bills head coach Doug Marrone shared his philosophy on when to throw the challenge flag this week. It’s clear he has some stringent rules that he adheres to as far as when to and when not to make use of it.

“I think you want to get as much information as you can,” said Marrone. “You get it from the player and you get it up top, and then you have to make a decision. It is critical. You don’t ever want to use up two (challenges), and not have one for
that second half. I think you’ve got to get as much information as you can in a short period of time it’s a lot easier. When you’re in the heat of the battle, and it’s going quick and it’s fast and you’ve got to make fast decisions, there’s a lot of information coming at you, and you just have to make the best decision and play percentages.”

That’s kind of what happened in Week 1 when he elected to challenge the fumble by New England in the first half on their own side of the field.

“Here’s exactly what happened,” said Marrone. “One, we didn’t see the bean bag thrown for them to say it was a fumble.  We had 100-percent information that it was a fumble.  Then what happened, is from where I was, I saw Manny (Lawson) get up and point that we had the ball. As we’re waiting to get the (video) feed, which we didn’t get that feed, nor did the officials get that feed, New England’s trying to hurry up.  I’m trying to put two and two together.

“Really, the philosophy is, we’ll challenge 100-percent of the calls that we believe and see that’s correct.  But when things come, if you’re going to take a chance on a turnover, which would have been a big thing on that side, if you can’t get the feed, and then you make a decision what to do, the first half you’re OK.  You may lose a time out.  It gets critical in the second half, where you can’t afford to lose those time outs and you have to be sure.

“We have people upstairs that are looking at it, and it’s what are you seeing, what are you seeing.   Wait, they’re showing this.  Wait, they’re showing that.  Hey, we know it’s a fumble.  And the officials came over to the sidelines and said hey it was a good challenge and obviously we lost.  It’s a lot easier when the extra feed stuff comes in on Monday, on what you should have done.  Right now, we’re oh for one.”

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