On any given passing play in a football game, three things can happen:

  1. Completion (yay)
  2. Incompletion (well, THAT was useless)
  3. Interception (BAD!)

The obvious corollary is that running the ball is a safer, if less spectacular, way to gain yards on offense. Some coaches, especially in the 1950s and '60s college football teams, took this to an extreme and almost eliminated the forward pass from their playbooks. Current offensive thinking demands a balance between run and pass, with some radicals even advocating short passes in the flat as a replacement for the "out of style", old-fashioned, smashmouth, run-straight-ahead method. Heretics.

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