(CBS) The Bears fell 15-14 to the lowly 49ers on Sunday when Robbie Gould hit a 24-yard field goal with four seconds left.
The reason there was so little time left was because Chicago was out of timeouts, allowing San Francisco to milk the clock down. Of course, there was one recourse that the Bears could’ve taken, and that would’ve been allowing the 49ers to cruise into the end zone for a go-ahead score with about 90 seconds left after Chicago had used its final timeout. That would’ve put the 49ers up 18-14 ahead of their point-after attempt and most notably given the Bears and rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky the chance to drive back the other way for the game-winning touchdown.
Instead, coach John Fox directed his team to play defense full tilt. After the game, he provided a puzzling reason for why.
“We talked about (letting the 49ers score), but it would have had to be done at about 1:36 or 1:40 or whatever it was,” Fox told reporters. “We felt good about the block we had on the potential field goal. Neither one of those are great options at the 5 and 4 yard line.”
As you might expect upon further review, Fox’s decision doesn’t hold up to mathematical scrutiny. By putting his hope in a blocked field goal, he was banking on an outcome that happens less than a 1 percent of the time.
Since 2001, there have been 2,431 field-goal attempts from inside 25 yards, according to ESPN Stats & Info via Jeff Dickerson. Of those, only 20 were blocked, which equates to to 0.82 percent of those kicks, per ESPN Stats & Info.