Packers kicker Mason Crosby had victory on Sunday. And then again. And again. And again. About a match winner who shouldn’t have been.
Last laugh … Randall Cobb with a relieved Mason Crosby.
Of course it would be exciting. But so exciting?
The Cincinnati Bengals and the Green Bay Packers went head-to-head in the fourth quarter. 2:12 minutes before the end, coach Matt LaFleur sent kicker Mason Crosby onto the field when the score was 22:22. The 37-year-old had turned 27 field goals in a row, usually reliability in person, and three in the course of the game (he missed one extra point, however). This time, Crosby hit the post to the left from just 36 yards. So far, so unusual.
But now it was getting really wild. Because the Bengals’ kicker, Evan Mcpherson, didn’t close the sack either. With 26 seconds to go, he just missed the target from a proud 57 yards and hit the post. So overtime? The Packers got one more chance, Aaron Rodgers getting his team into position. Crosby came up from 51 yards – and kicked off to the left again. Encouraging pats on the back of the teammates, who probably couldn’t believe their eyes.
The madness continued in overtime. 40 yards, next chance to win, Crosby took the measure. Again to the left of it. Then it was Mcpherson’s turn from 49 yards and hit – at least he and many of his colleagues thought. But the cheers came prematurely, it just hit the flag at the top of the pole. It was a “crazy feeling” when he noticed his mistake, said the Bengals kicker afterwards.
So again nothing. The spectators at Paul Brown Stadium have now counted five missed field goals, the last time that was in a final phase of this kind in 1970.
Packers puzzles – until LaFleur looks Crosby in the eye
Then, 2:18 minutes from overtime, Rodgers found Randall Cobb holding the egg on the third try and 16. But it wasn’t a first down, centimeters were missing. What to do? Play the fourth try or send Crosby out for the fourth time?
LaFleur “toyed” with the thought of the former, as he subsequently admitted. Then he went over to Crosby and “saw no twitching in his eyes”. Crosby said, “I’ll do this.” And LaFleur replied, “Then do it.” Rodgers also gave his consent. “So let’s kick it.”
It was 49 yards this time. And Crosby turned casually, as if nothing had happened, right in the middle. The “match winner”, almost against his will, was finally found.
Conscious memory gaps
And what did Crosby himself say? Not much. On the second attempt, the wind played a role, “I felt good there, but found a bad line.” In general, “probably nobody” has ever seen a game like this.
Crosby probably didn’t want to worry too much about this game. LaFleur and wide receiver Davante Adams, meanwhile, had “bad memories”. They could only remember the last kick, they both said in unison.