Vikings coach Brad Childress acknowledged Monday that he was trying to call a timeout just before Brett Favre’s 1-yard touchdown pass to tight end Visanthe Shiancoe in the fourth quarter because they had the wrong formation.
Specifically, fullback Naufahu Tahi was lined up on the wrong side of the formation. Here’s how Favre described it after the game.
“The touchdown play I threw to Shiancoe I think from the one-yard line was actually not the formation or the personnel we wanted in,” he said. “We almost called a timeout. I knew by [Tahi’s] look that he had no clue. He hadn’t run that play. You just have to be able to adapt sometimes. I thought we did a good job at it. I thought this whole year we’ve done a good job of communicating and handling those situations, because coaches typically don’t like to call anything on Sunday’s that they haven’t practiced. But as a player, especially if you have played as long as I have, I go, I know that we haven’t practiced that – and I am just talking about plays in general – but I feel real confident with our guys that we can do things like that. Not that you want to get beyond the beaten path, but we have guys that are smart enough to handle that.”
Childress said the officials didn’t see him signaling for a timeout.
“It’s hard to see when a guy has his back to you,” he said. “Those guys can’t sometimes see frontally, let alone in the rear. It’s widely known. Yeah, Tahi jumped on the wrong side of the formation and the clock was running down so sometimes you just play football. Everybody else did the right thing and on that particular play he was a decoy. He did a nice job with his decoy responsibilities. Brett threw a nice touchdown pass to Visanthe where he was supposed to be.”
Childress was second-guessed by some for not having Favre throw the ball after the Vikings got to the Baltimore 18-yard line with 2:51 left in the fourth quarter following a 58-yard completion to Sidney Rice. Peterson ran the ball three consecutive times, setting up the eventual 31-yard game-winning field goal by Ryan Longwell.
Childress said he wanted to get the Ravens to use their remaining timeouts, which they did after Peterson’s first two running plays. Peterson’s run on third-and-9 got the clock down to the 2-minute warning.
Asked if there was concern about throwing the ball in that situation, Childress said: “I mean it’s not the Woody Hayes philosophy. If you put the ball in the air and two out of three things that can happen are bad. I don’t believe that. Not with the guy that’s playing quarterback, not with our receivers. That was an effort on my part to make sure that we ran them out of timeouts.”
Quarterback John David Booty was back in the locker room today after being re-signed to the practice squad on Saturday. Booty was released last Wednesday because the Vikings needed more depth in practice along the offensive line.
“That’s just the way it goes being on the practice squad,” Booty said. “They’ve got to get the guys in so we’re able to even go through a practice, especially (with) lineman out.”
Booty, a fifth-round pick last season, said he’s not sure if any teams called his agent after he was released, but he reiterated that he wants to stay with the Vikings.
“The first time I got released [at the end of training camp] I could have probably gone to other practice squads, but I think that this is where I wanted to be in the beginning,” he said. “I really enjoy it here and I’m learning a lot right now so hopefully it’ll be good for me in the long run.”