Green Bay Packers: Wild Card round special teams recap
By Kenn Korb
- NYG 4; 24 yard return (NYG 28)
- NYG 1; 31 yard return (NYG 32)
- NYG 3; No Gain (NYG 3)
- NYG 9; 24 yard return (NYG 33)
- NYG 0; 24 yard return (NYG 24)
- Extra points: 5/5
- Field goals: 1/1 (Made: 32)
It was a mostly routine evening from Green Bay’s reliable kicker.
The main difference from most performances here was the glaring absence of touchbacks; though he doesn’t kick them at the rate of many other kickers, he usually has a decent number in his performances. This game saw him only achieve one, with all his other kickoffs not even going into the endzone.
Sometimes that ended up being more than fine (one kick was erroneously secured by the Giants’ returner despite it appearing to be headed out of bounds; instead of a penalty and free 40 yards, it became starting field position at the NYG 3 yard line), but most ended as relatively bland starting position for New York.
Personally, I would prefer to see those kicks just go into the endzone, but whether by strategy (something many teams have resorted to during this year has been kicking short) or whether-related (it isn’t as if Robbie Gould was kicking all that deep for the Giants either) Crosby doesn’t always seem to be aiming for touchbacks.
That could bite the team in certain matchups, but it might also be a surprisingly good strategy too.
The Giants would have been a team I’d worry about taking advantage of seemingly gifted yardage in the return game, and that was before they lined up Odell Beckham Jr. back there; even with him bringing up the ball, it didn’t change the kicking strategy, and he didn’t make a sizable difference there.
Scoring-wise, Crosby was as effective as ever. All his extra points went through without a hitch, while his field goal was kicked perfect and true through the uprights.
With Jordy Nelson’s rib injury a possible hindrance to the Green Bay offense in the upcoming game versus Dallas, Crosby may end up with more field goal tries than he saw here. We have no reason to expect he won’t convert every chance afforded to him.