Keenan Allen in August 2022. Aug 1, 2022; Costa Mesa, CA, USA; Los Angeles Chargers receiver Keenan Allen (13) Carries the ball during training camp at the Jack Hammett Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Chargers came away with a 30-28 road win over the Cleveland Browns Sunday (despite a swarm of midges), but that wasn’t always assured. In particular, with the Chargers up by two at their own 46 and facing a fourth-and-one with 1:14 left in the game, they chose to go for it. And Justin Herbert’s pass to Mike Williams fell incomplete, creating a turnover on downs and giving the Browns the ball back. That had many questioning that call, including injured Chargers’ receiver Keenan Allen (seen above in a training camp practice in August):

Interestingly enough, Allen wasn’t the only one thinking that specific thing. FanSided Chargers‘ blog Bolt Beat tweeted the same thing a minute earlier, minus the question mark:

It worked out in this case for the Chargers, though. The Browns took over in Los Angeles territory after the incompletion, and picked up one first down on a Jacoby Brissett pass to Amari Cooper that set them up at the Chargers’ 35. But they couldn’t get any further on one additional run (stopped for no gain) and two more passing attempts, both of which fell incomplete. That meant Cade York’s game-winning field goal attempt was from 54 yards out, and he pushed it just right:

After the game, Chargers’ coach Brandon Staley defended his decision to go for it on fourth down:

But there were many other people who agreed with Allen’s criticisms:

As some noted, though, models based on past plays have some support for Staley’s decision to go for it in the hopes of finishing the game, especially with that short of distance to go:

In the end, the decision to go for it didn’t work out for the Chargers, but the end result of the game did. And that seems to be what Allen concluded as well:

Allen has missed four straight games with a hamstring injury, and it’s not clear yet when he’ll return. But it’s still interesting to see a current player blast his head coach’s decision-making this way.

[Photo from Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports]

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.