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Old 08-08-2011, 02:01 PM  
Rain Man Rain Man is offline
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Your Chance To Participate In A New Football Phenomenon (Sandbox Simulations)

I apologize if the mods think this is soliciting, and I guess it is, but at the same time it's beta testing a new product developed by long-time planeteers, and it's free.

cdcox and I have been developing a new football game for the thoughtful fan, where players build franchises and compete against each other. A description is below.

If you're interested, we're offering the game for free in Year 1 to Chiefsplanet members, with the goal of both giving the system a dry run and also hooking you like Phillip Morris. You can go to www.sandboxsimulations.com to sign up, and use the access code 6Lanier3.

Here's the overview:

Build and manage a full 53-player roster over multiple seasons, as an offseason activity to give you year-round football

Select your personnel to match your offensive and defensive scheme. Every position matters – even your blocking tight end.

Realistic and accurate simulations of league games based on head-to-head matchups against other teams in your league.


This is essentially a new concept in fantasy football that attempts to simulate as closely as possible the management of a real NFL franchise over a multi-year period. Unlike regular fantasy football, every position on the offense and defense contributes to your success or failure. On special teams, the punter, kicker, and kick returners matter.

In Sandbox Football you will build a team – an entire 53-man football team – via an initial draft, and will maintain it year after year in annual rookie drafts, trading periods, and free agency. You compete against teams in your league. In the first year of the game, before the start of the NFL season, you will build your roster by drafting veterans and rookies through separate drafts, and through trades with other teams in the league. Your roster is frozen at the beginning of the NFL season. During the real regular NFL season, you can focus on your traditional fantasy games and perhaps keep on eye on your Sandbox roster as our statistical models build the data on player performances. At the end of the regular NFL season, the Sandbox season begins. There will be 16 games in the season. In real time, the season will run about 8 weeks (2 alternate reality games per week).

Game outcomes will be simulated based on the performance of individual players during the just-completed NFL regular season. The simulations, developed by a PhD statistical expert, estimate how individual players will perform in the context of your alternate reality team competing head-to-head against other teams in the league and with the specific team that you have built. The simulations will consider the offensive and defensive schemes that you select. So you can build your roster to support a power running game or a high-flying passing attack. You can run a 3-4 or 4-3 base defense. You can run nickel formations or four-wide receiver sets. You can rotate your DL to keep them fresh.

The game is more about building a team than playing video games. So this isn't Madden, but you will have the ability to tweak your game plan to take the best advantage of your roster and the weaknesses of your opponent. Injuries are a factor in the game. If a player is unavailable during weeks 3 through 6 in the NFL, he is also unavailable during the same weeks in the alternate reality season. So roster depth matters. The game simulations are based on the most advanced statistics and the latest research regarding what matters in winning an NFL game. But, the outcomes of the games have a random component, just like real NFL games.

The calendar for the alternate reality league year will look something like this:
• Jan to Mid March: Alternate Reality regular season and playoffs.
• Mid-March to the beginning of NFL season: Roster building through trades, veteran draft (first year), free agent drafts (2nd year and beyond), and rookie draft.
• Beginning of NFL season to end of regular NFL season: Alternate reality league is dormant, but the NFL players are generating their performance stats for the up-coming AR league.
• Rinse and repeat.

Copyright Sandbox Simulations, all rights reserved.

We're still finalizing the cost structure, but this won't be an expensive game to play at all. It might range from a few bucks a year to $50 per year, depending on a few factors.

Year 1 will require a couple of days of drafting with rather high intensity, but we've got it set up where you can put your draft list together and do customized and automated drafting if you like.

So...go! Now! Time to get ready for the draft!




Note that we are still in beta testing, so things could change if we find problems in the system.


How Free Agency Works:

Free Agency will begin before the 2012 season after the rookie draft.

Our process is as follows for the 2012 season. In 2013 and beyond there will be minor changes as noted later.

1. We will unveil the list of available free agents so you can check out the talent pool.

2. If you look in "Standings", you will see that you have a salary account value of $1,300. You will use this to sign your veterans to contracts, sign your rookies to contracts, and (in a competitive bidding process) sign free agents to contracts.

The cost of a contract is as follows for players already on your roster (both veterans and rookies).

$0 - 1 season contract
$10 - 2 season contract
$22 - 3 season contract
$37 - 4 season contract
$55 - 5 season contract
$76 - 6 season contract
$100 - 7 season contract

You will sign your existing players to contracts using an interface that we will unveil shortly. If your 53-man roster is set you can spend your $1,300 on your current roster. However, it may be worthwhile to hold some money back so you can compete for free agents.

3. The free agency period begins.

Bidding for free agents will be open and competitive. As players come available, teams will be allowed to sign them if they are the high bidder. The contract length is automatically calculated by rounding down the bid to the chart below.

Contract Length (Seasons) Salary Points Bid
1 0 to 9
2 10 to 21
3 22 to 36
4 37 to 54
5 55 to 75
6 76 to 99
7 100 or more

For example, if you submit the winning bid for a player at a price of 25 salary points, that player becomes yours under a 3-year contract. If you submit a bid for 35 points and win, it’s also a 3-year contract. If you submit a bid for 38 points, it’s a 4-year contract. If you submit a bid for 120 points, it’s a 7-year contract.

For the 2012 free agency period, we will enforce the 53-man rule. You will need to cut down to 53 players before the free agency period starts, and if you sign a player to go above 53, you will need to cut a player to stay within the roster limit. NOTE: DON'T CUT YET UNLESS YOU WANT TO. WE'RE STILL FINALIZING THE SYSTEM AND WANT TO BE SURE THAT THIS RULE WORKS IN 2012.

4. Ending Bidding and Ending Free Agency.

Bids on an individual player will begin once the first player places a bid. For the 2012 season that bid must be $1 or more. Bidding ends when the existing high bid had not been raised for 72 hours. At that point, the high-bid team is awarded the player under the contract terms described in Step 3.

The free agency period in 2012 will end once there have been no bids on any players for 72 hours.

5. Unused Salary Points

If you do not use all of your salary points in a given year, they will roll over from year to year. This is experimental and we'll have to see how it works. If it doesn't work, they'll expire each year, or maybe a portion of the points can roll over. Right now, assume they all roll over.

6. Salary Points and Roster Management

In the Sandbox system, salary points and the salary cap are used only for acquiring players. You will never have to track the number of salary points “on your roster” and you will never have to cut a player for salary cap reasons.

Additionally, you are not obligated to keep a player for the full length of his contract. You can cut him or trade him at any time. However, recognize that it’s a waste of salary points to cut or trade a player before the end of his contract. But it doesn't hamstring you going forward - it's just past money that you wasted.

7. Free Agency and Contract Length - Retaining Your Current Players

When a player reaches the end of their contract, they go back into the free agency pool and teams will bid for their services. You are eligible to bid on them to get them back, just like you can bid on any free agents.

There is one exception to the rule of free agents going into the free agency pool, as follows:

• At the end of the bidding process, you have the opportunity to re-sign your own players by outbidding the high bidder. Your bid must be the minimum points to increase their contract period by a year over the high bid. (Example: your player goes to free agency, and another team bids 50 points for him, which equates to a 4-year contract. You can keep the player by paying 55 points for him, which is the minimum amount for a 5-year contract.) If the high bidder offered a contract of 100 points or more (7-years), you can keep the player by bidding 10% more points than the high bid.

8. Free Agency and Trades

If you trade for a player, their contract length is a consideration. Trading for a player with 6 years left on his contract will give you his services for that amount of time (unless you cut him or trade him, or he retires). Trading for a player with 1 year left on his contract means that he’ll go back into the free agency pool at the end of the season. (Of course, you can still retain him via Step 7.)

9. Future Years

In future years, the process will be identical to that shown above, with the following exceptions.

a. Because you will have a lot of veteran players under contract, you won't need $1,300. You'll get a new annual allotment of signing dollars. We're still working on the exact amount, but it looks like it'll be between $500 and $600.

b. In the 2012 season, we will introduce all free agents at once to catch up. In the 2013 season and beyond, the free agency period will occur during the actual NFL season. We will sprinkle the free agents in one division at a time over the course of the season. (The divisions may be randomly selected or we may release a calendar. It doesn't matter that much.) This system should be interesting because some free agents will come available early in the season when you don't know their performance for the year - greater risk, greater reward - while other free agents will come available later in the season when you know what their performance will be, but so does everyone else.

c. In the 2013 season and beyond, you will be able to retain more than 53 players through the rookie draft and the main free agency period. You will then have a cutdown period to get to 53 and we will have a final free agency period where you can sign any players who have been cut. In that final period you will have to enforce a 53-man roster, so if you sign a player you have to cut one.

10. When you think about the schedule in 2013 and beyond, it will go like this:

a. Sandbox season goes from February through April.
b. Rookie draft in May. No 53-man limit.
c. Free agency from (likely) September through December, with free agents sprinkled in throughout that period.
d. January. Roster cuts to 53.
e. Late January. Final free agency period to flesh out rosters and sign players cut in Step d.
f. New Sandbox season begins.


Last edited by Rain Man; 05-27-2013 at 09:15 AM..
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Old 08-01-2012, 09:31 PM   #2551
Rain Man Rain Man is offline
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I apologize if this is all due to your mixed sims, but I'll keep dutifully reporting.

We have a phantom turn over on downs here.

Dallas
4th Q 4:50 2nd and 10 Dallas 20 free agent scrambles for 12 yards. PENALTY. Defensive Holding on Javier Arenas. 5 yards. Penalty declined. Turned over on downs
4th Q 4:42 1st and 10 Dallas 32 free agent passes complete to Steve Breaston for a gain of 14 yards. time out Duluth
4th Q 4:17 1st and 10 Dallas 46 free agent passes complete to Steve Breaston for a gain of 28 yards.
Dallas 10, Duluth 40
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In the final seven games of the 2013 season, the Chiefs averaged 34.6 points per game, scored 38 points or more 4 times, and went 2-5. The NFL has ruined the sport.
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Old 08-01-2012, 09:34 PM   #2552
cdcox cdcox is offline
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When I said "Ignore this one" what I really meant is that

This simulation has less meaning than if Elvis Grbac, Jimmy Raye, Dick Curl had each taken their turn scratching a play in the same piece of dirt, then Neil Smith had come by and written in some annotations.

Ignore this one.
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Old 08-01-2012, 09:50 PM   #2553
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdcox View Post
When I said "Ignore this one" what I really meant is that

This simulation has less meaning than if Elvis Grbac, Jimmy Raye, Dick Curl had each taken their turn scratching a play in the same piece of dirt, then Neil Smith had come by and written in some annotations.

Ignore this one.
Ah, okay. Just the Duluth game or the whole round?

As an FYI, the Richmond-Cedar Rapids game looked perfect other than the very last play. And the last play may actually be correct, but it was just disappointing.

We're down by a touchdown and mount a furious two-minute drive, pushing from our own 26 to the Cedar Rapids 8. And then, with 13 seconds left in the game, no timeouts, and needing a touchdown to tie, we call a running play.

If we were inside the five, I could abide by this call. But calling a run on the last play of the game on the 8 yard line doesn't seem like something we would want to do.

Cedar Rapids 24, Richmond 17
Richmond
4th Q 2:18 1st and 10 Richmond 26 Matt Hasselbeck (pressured) passes incomplete to Roy E. Williams.
4th Q 2:11 2nd and 10 Richmond 26 Matt Hasselbeck (pressured) passes incomplete to Roy E. Williams.
4th Q 2:04 3rd and 10 Richmond 26 Matt Hasselbeck passes complete to Roy E. Williams for a gain of 18 yards. Two minute warning.
4th Q 1:56 1st and 10 Richmond 44 Matt Hasselbeck sacked by Cameron Wake for a loss of -6 yards.
4th Q 1:31 2nd and 16 Richmond 38 Matt Hasselbeck (pressured) passes incomplete to Roy E. Williams.
4th Q 1:24 3rd and 16 Richmond 38 Matt Hasselbeck (pressured) passes incomplete to Roy E. Williams.
4th Q 1:17 4th and 16 Richmond 38 Matt Hasselbeck passes complete to Evan Moore for a gain of 18 yards.
4th Q 1:03 1st and 10 Cedar Rapids 45 Matt Hasselbeck spikes the ball to kill the clock.
4th Q 1:01 2nd and 10 Cedar Rapids 45 Matt Hasselbeck passes complete to Evan Moore for a gain of 5 yards. time out Richmond
4th Q 0:53 3rd and 5 Cedar Rapids 40 Matt Hasselbeck passes complete to Roy E. Williams for a gain of 12 yards.
4th Q 0:39 1st and 10 Cedar Rapids 28 Matt Hasselbeck spikes the ball to kill the clock.
4th Q 0:37 2nd and 10 Cedar Rapids 28 LaRod Stephens-Howling rushes for 3 yards. time out Richmond
4th Q 0:29 3rd and 7 Cedar Rapids 25 Matt Hasselbeck passes complete to Malcom Floyd for a gain of 17 yards.
4th Q 0:15 1st and goal Cedar Rapids 8 Matt Hasselbeck spikes the ball to kill the clock.
4th Q 0:13 2nd and goal Cedar Rapids 8 LaRod Stephens-Howling rushes for 2 yards.
Cedar Rapids 24, Richmond 17
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Old 08-01-2012, 09:54 PM   #2554
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The Dallas-Duluth game is the only one that should be bad. The rest of the round should be okay. I've already fixed the code so that can never ever happen again.

I agree that they shouldn't call a running play in that situation in the Cedar Rapids Richmond game. I'll check the code to see why that wasn't a "must pass" situation and fix it.
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Old 08-01-2012, 09:54 PM   #2555
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Also, I haven't ever paid attention to this in real life, but I have noticed a few long drives at the end of the game that are extremely time-efficient. In this case, for example,
Richmond ran a 15-play drive in 2:18. Now, that may very well be possible since they had a two-minute warning, called two timeouts, and spiked the ball three times, but my gut says that a 15-play two-minute drill is Joe Montana-esque.
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:04 PM   #2556
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In the Springfield-Chula Vista game, this is absolutely the right call to decline the penalty, but it reminded me to mention that if they accept the penalty they get another play. I think we found and fixed that early in the season, but just wanted to confirm.

Springfield
2nd Q 1:04 Billy Cundiff kicks 64 yards, returned for 9 yards by free agent
2nd Q 0:56 1st and 10 Springfield 10 free agent rushes for 3 yards.
2nd Q 0:06 2nd and 7 Springfield 13 free agent (pressured) passes complete to Jason Avant for a gain of 11 yards. PENALTY. Defensive Holding on George Wilson. 5 yards. Penalty declined.
Springfield 0, Chula Vista 14
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:05 PM   #2557
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rain Man View Post
Also, I haven't ever paid attention to this in real life, but I have noticed a few long drives at the end of the game that are extremely time-efficient. In this case, for example,
Richmond ran a 15-play drive in 2:18. Now, that may very well be possible since they had a two-minute warning, called two timeouts, and spiked the ball three times, but my gut says that a 15-play two-minute drill is Joe Montana-esque.
That's a perplexing decision. How many times have fans screamed at the TV when a team looks all confused at the line of scrimmage and call a time out after letting 20 seconds run off the clock. If we program that kind of realistic chaos into the game, people are going to get miffed, even tough it is realistic. Admittedly it is probably over optimized right now such that teams always call time outs as soon as the play is over, they spike the ball quickly whenever it can save a few seconds, they always quickly get to the LOS, and they never have any indecision. If we do introduce "chaos" it should be QB-dependent, since some teams obviously manage the clock better than others. There might be a way to quantify that, but it is probably a year 2 or 3 project.
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:10 PM   #2558
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That's a perplexing decision. How many times have fans screamed at the TV when a team looks all confused at the line of scrimmage and call a time out after letting 20 seconds run off the clock. If we program that kind of realistic chaos into the game, people are going to get miffed, even tough it is realistic. Admittedly it is probably over optimized right now such that teams always call time outs as soon as the play is over, they spike the ball quickly whenever it can save a few seconds, they always quickly get to the LOS, and they never have any indecision. If we do introduce "chaos" it should be QB-dependent, since some teams obviously manage the clock better than others. There might be a way to quantify that, but it is probably a year 2 or 3 project.
Cool. I have no issue with that. It adds some excitement to see good clock management. It's almost as if we're Patriots and Ravens owners instead of Chiefs owners.
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:15 PM   #2559
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rain Man View Post
In the Springfield-Chula Vista game, this is absolutely the right call to decline the penalty, but it reminded me to mention that if they accept the penalty they get another play. I think we found and fixed that early in the season, but just wanted to confirm.

Springfield
2nd Q 1:04 Billy Cundiff kicks 64 yards, returned for 9 yards by free agent
2nd Q 0:56 1st and 10 Springfield 10 free agent rushes for 3 yards.
2nd Q 0:06 2nd and 7 Springfield 13 free agent (pressured) passes complete to Jason Avant for a gain of 11 yards. PENALTY. Defensive Holding on George Wilson. 5 yards. Penalty declined.
Springfield 0, Chula Vista 14
Yes, I did fix the extra play at the end of the half issue. In this case Springfield wanted to decline it due to field position. If they had better field position, or if it had been the 4th quarter, they would (I hope) have accepted the penalty to get the extra play.
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:18 PM   #2560
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In the Clearwater-Fort Wayne game, Fort Wayne should've gone for the touchdown here. I would think that any time in the fourth quarter that you have this situation inside the 5 with less than 3 yards to go, you go for the first down/touchdown. Earlier in the game, a field goal might be reasonable.

Clearwater 28, Fort Wayne 24
Fort Wayne
4th Q 8:52 1st and 10 Fort Wayne 44 Drew Brees sacked by Tamba Hali for a loss of -7 yards.
4th Q 8:16 2nd and 17 Fort Wayne 37 Drew Brees passes complete to C.J. Spiller for a gain of 8 yards.
4th Q 7:31 3rd and 9 Fort Wayne 45 Drew Brees passes complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a gain of 26 yards.
4th Q 6:46 1st and 10 Clearwater 29 Drew Brees passes complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a gain of 1 yards.
4th Q 6:01 2nd and 9 Clearwater 28 Mikel Leshoure rushes for 2 yards.
4th Q 5:19 3rd and 7 Clearwater 26 Drew Brees passes complete to Dwayne Bowe for a gain of 9 yards.
4th Q 4:34 1st and 10 Clearwater 18 Drew Brees passes incomplete to Dwayne Bowe.
4th Q 4:27 2nd and 10 Clearwater 18 Drew Brees passes incomplete to Larry Fitzgerald.
4th Q 4:20 3rd and 10 Clearwater 18 Drew Brees passes complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a gain of 11 yards.
4th Q 3:35 1st and goal Clearwater 6 Drew Brees (pressured) passes complete to C.J. Spiller for a gain of 3 yards.
4th Q 2:50 2nd and goal Clearwater 3 C.J. Spiller rushes for 1 yards.
4th Q 2:08 3rd and goal Clearwater 2 Drew Brees passes complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a gain of 2 yards. Two minute warning.
4th Q 2:00 4th and goal Clearwater half yardline Ryan Succop field goal attempt from 17 yards. Good.
Clearwater 28, Fort Wayne 27
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:23 PM   #2561
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We seemed to have a fair number of free agent quarterbacks this week, but maybe that's normal.
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:25 PM   #2562
cdcox cdcox is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rain Man View Post
In the Clearwater-Fort Wayne game, Fort Wayne should've gone for the touchdown here. I would think that any time in the fourth quarter that you have this situation inside the 5 with less than 3 yards to go, you go for the first down/touchdown. Earlier in the game, a field goal might be reasonable.

Clearwater 28, Fort Wayne 24
Fort Wayne
4th Q 8:52 1st and 10 Fort Wayne 44 Drew Brees sacked by Tamba Hali for a loss of -7 yards.
4th Q 8:16 2nd and 17 Fort Wayne 37 Drew Brees passes complete to C.J. Spiller for a gain of 8 yards.
4th Q 7:31 3rd and 9 Fort Wayne 45 Drew Brees passes complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a gain of 26 yards.
4th Q 6:46 1st and 10 Clearwater 29 Drew Brees passes complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a gain of 1 yards.
4th Q 6:01 2nd and 9 Clearwater 28 Mikel Leshoure rushes for 2 yards.
4th Q 5:19 3rd and 7 Clearwater 26 Drew Brees passes complete to Dwayne Bowe for a gain of 9 yards.
4th Q 4:34 1st and 10 Clearwater 18 Drew Brees passes incomplete to Dwayne Bowe.
4th Q 4:27 2nd and 10 Clearwater 18 Drew Brees passes incomplete to Larry Fitzgerald.
4th Q 4:20 3rd and 10 Clearwater 18 Drew Brees passes complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a gain of 11 yards.
4th Q 3:35 1st and goal Clearwater 6 Drew Brees (pressured) passes complete to C.J. Spiller for a gain of 3 yards.
4th Q 2:50 2nd and goal Clearwater 3 C.J. Spiller rushes for 1 yards.
4th Q 2:08 3rd and goal Clearwater 2 Drew Brees passes complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a gain of 2 yards. Two minute warning.
4th Q 2:00 4th and goal Clearwater half yardline Ryan Succop field goal attempt from 17 yards. Good.
Clearwater 28, Fort Wayne 27
Yeah, probably a tiny logic error or if it is performing as intended, i'll tweak the decision point between FG and TD.
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:27 PM   #2563
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It's a minor point and more of storytelling value than actual importance, but in this splendid offensive showing, it seems like both penalties should've been half the distance to the goal.

Pittsburgh
2nd Q 9:46 1st and 10 Pittsburgh 1 PENALTY. False Start Patrick Crayton half the distance to the goal.
2nd Q 9:46 1st and 10 Pittsburgh half yardline Seneca Wallace passes incomplete to Kelley Washington.
2nd Q 9:39 2nd and 10 Pittsburgh half yardline Seneca Wallace (pressured) passes complete to Kelley Washington for a gain of 1 yards.
2nd Q 8:54 3rd and 9 Pittsburgh 1 Seneca Wallace passes complete to Patrick Crayton for a gain of 12 yards. PENALTY. Offensive Pass Interference on Patrick Crayton. -1 yards.
2nd Q 8:46 3rd and 10 Pittsburgh 1 Seneca Wallace passes incomplete to Fred Davis.
2nd Q 8:39 4th and 10 Pittsburgh 1 Brandon Fields punts 52 yards, returned for 11 yards by Antonio Brown
Overland Park 14, Pittsburgh 0
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:32 PM   #2564
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As a very low priority improvement for future years, it would be nice if the pass completions had a couple of figures following the play that showed the yardage of the pass and the yardage of the YAC, so we can envision whether the receiver went up for a long ball or broke loose on a short reception.

As a short term improvement, would it be possible to note how many time outs remain when a team calls a time out? Something like "Time out Richmond. 2 time outs remaining."
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Old 08-01-2012, 10:37 PM   #2565
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As a very minor point, you need a space after "by" on the punt returns that have a fair catch. I think it's only for a fair catch at this point.

Wichita
3rd Q 15:00 Jason Hanson kicks 63 yards, returned for 36 yards by Darren Sproles
3rd Q 14:52 1st and 10 Wichita 39 Cam Newton passes incomplete to Early Doucet. PENALTY. Personal Foul on Nate Solder. -15 yards.
3rd Q 14:44 1st and 25 Wichita 24 Cam Newton (pressured) scrambles for 1 yards.
3rd Q 14:02 2nd and 24 Wichita 25 Cam Newton passes incomplete, dropped by Jerrel Jernigan.
3rd Q 13:55 3rd and 24 Wichita 25 Cam Newton passes incomplete to Joshua Cribbs.
3rd Q 13:48 4th and 24 Wichita 25 Michael Koenen punts 41 yards, fair catch byDenarius Moore
Wichita 10, Las Vegas 3
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