Seahawks at Packers how to watch: TV channel, streaming info, odds, pick, everything to know for NFC clash
Aaron Rodgers and Russell Wilson are expected to return to the field this weekGreen Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) talk after the Green Bay Packers 28-23 win over the Seattle Seahawks.
GREEN BAY, Wis. — On a fourth down from the outer edges of field-goal range at the end of Sunday’s opening drive, Green Bay Packers coach Matt LaFleur showed his confidence in Mason Crosby.
LaFleur didn’t hesitate to send Crosby onto the field for a 54-yard field goal. The veteran kicker, embattled in his 15th season, split the uprights to give the Packers a 3-0 lead over Minnesota.
At that point, it appeared Crosby and the Packers' field-goal operation might be turning the corner. It was Crosby’s longest made field goal of the season, and a much-needed positive with his 2021 season in a downward spiral.
Green Bay Packers vs. Minnesota Vikings NFL Week 11 Odds, Plays and Insights
Then, two possessions later, Crosby went on the field for a 32-yard field goal. The snap and hold appeared fine, but Crosby’s kick veered left, doinking off the upright. It was Crosby’s eighth missed kick in his past 14 attempts, a stunning slide that would cause many teams to question its kicker, no matter how experienced or revered.
“No,” LaFleur said when asked if he has considered trying a different kicker. “I would say absolutely not.”
LaFleur reiterated the Packers are working through their “whole process,” and Crosby is not the only person to blame for their field-goal struggles. The Packers are working with a new holder and new snapper this season, and both Corey Bojorquez and Steve Wirtel have had their issues.
'That's embarrassing': Packers coach Matt LaFleur fumes over 'inexcusable' penalty
The Packers drew eight flags for 92 yards, surpassing their previous season high of seven for 87 yards in a win against the 49ers.“That's embarrassing,” LaFleur said after the Packers' 34-31 loss to the Minnesota Vikings. “Ultimately everything falls on me. I have to make sure that doesn't happen because that cannot happen coming off a stopped-clock situation. Can't happen anytime, but especially when you have a … stopped-ball situation and you've got 12. That's just – it’s inexcusable.
For those reasons, LaFleur said he is not opening the kicker position for competition, even though the Packers have a kicker in JJ Molson available on their practice squad.
“That never falls squarely on one individual,” LaFleur said. “Our operation has got to improve, and that’s from the snap to the hold to the kick. So we’ll continue to work on that, but certainly have a lot of confidence in Mason. Never would have sent him out there if we didn’t on a 54-yarder, and he came through.
“So I think that just shows the level of confidence that we have not only in him, but that entire group to go out there and execute, and they did a great job on that one. Certainly, you’ve got to make the chip shots. We can’t do that on a 31-yard attempt.”
Video: Biggest takeaway from Packers loss vs. Vikings 'GMFB' weighs in (NFL)
CHAOS CONTINUES: 32 things we learned from Week 11
Matt LaFleur: Packers will “absolutely not” replace kicker Mason Crosby
Liz Loza and Matt Harmon take a deep dive into the Week 11 matchup between the Dallas Cowboys and Kansas City Chiefs in which Clyde Edwards-Helaire made his triumphant return to play. Hear the full conversation on the Yahoo Fantasy Football Forecast. Subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you listen.
WEEK 11 WINNERS, LOSERS: Chiefs are back (but with caveats). Bills falling off.
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Getting into a groove
In the first half of the Packers' 34-31 loss to the Vikings, their offense had five possessions (not counting the kneel down to go to halftime). Of those five, one ended in a touchdown, one in a field goal, one in a missed field goal and two with punts.
In the second half, the Packers held the ball only three times, but each possession finished with a touchdown. The first drive of the second half was a seven-play, 75-yard march that featured quick swings to AJ Dillon out of the backfield, a Rodgers scramble, three connections between Rodgers and Davante Adams (including a touchdown) and a sprinkling in of Equanimeous St. Brown.
“I felt like actually it was probably the most (in sync) we've been maybe this season,” LaFleur said. “Just probably from me being very decisive with the call and getting great information from our assistant coaches; they're always a big part of that process.
“And then just, you know, relaying that to Aaron and Aaron to the other 10 guys in the huddle and just the belief that they had in the plays and then I think that was pretty reflective in the execution.”
Packers' Aaron Rodgers (toe) to start vs. Rams; may not practice beforehand
NFL Network's Brian Baldinger breaks down Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor's career day vs. Buffalo Bills in Week 11 of the 2021 season.
Rodgers in particular was in his zone in the second half, going 10-for-11 for 212 yards and three touchdowns. After a week off from playing in Week 9 and nearly a month off from practice with COVID-19 and a toe injury, LaFleur acknowledges Rodgers needed to get back in a groove, while also noting the succinctness of the offense stemmed from letting the MVP quarterback work within himself.
“It’s so easy to want to put a lot on him because he's so damn good. And he always goes out there and plays at such a high level.
“But I do think we got to be mindful of just trying to let him get in that groove because once he gets there, man, it's tough to stop and I think that's what you saw, basically from the back half of that first half throughout the rest of the game.”
Packers part ways with Will Redmond
The Packers said Monday they have released safety Will Redmond.
Redmond played in 31 games with five starts for the Packers, as well as four postseason games. He had been with Green Bay since 2018, but did not appear in any games during the 2021 season, spending the entire time on injured reserve with a toe injury.
Nov 21, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Detroit Lions defensive tackle Levi Onwuzurike (75) and inside linebacker Alex Anzalone (34) tackle Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (24) during the second half at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports ORG XMIT: IMAGN-451665 ORIG FILE ID: 20211121_neb_bk4_373.JPG
Nov 21, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Detroit Lions inside linebacker Alex Anzalone (34) celebrates a missed field goal by the Cleveland Browns during the second quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports ORG XMIT: IMAGN-451665 ORIG FILE ID: 20211121_neb_bg7_216.JPG
Indianapolis Colts running back Jonathan Taylor (28) celebrates his touchdown catch and run with teammate guard Mark Glowinski (64) and teammates against the Buffalo Bills during the first half at Highmark Stadium.
Nov 21, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Deebo Samuel (19) runs past Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Myles Jack (44) for a touchdown in the first half at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports ORG XMIT: IMAGN-451666 ORIG FILE ID: 20211121_jhp_fo8_0110.JPG