Packers coach Mike McCarthy knew it was coming, so he beat reporters to the punch.
After kicker Mason Crosby missed two more field goals in the Packers 24-20 win over the Lions, McCarthy said he was sticking with his kicker.
“I’ll address the field goal situation: Mason’s got to put the ball through the uprights. That’s something that we’ve got to do a better job of,” McCarthy said, via Jason Wilde of ESPNMilwaukee.com. “I thought Mason had a very good week of work. [He] didn’t hit it today the way he needs to hit it, but we’ll continue with Mason. We will not blink as far as our commitment to him.”
Later in his press conference, McCarthy even took note of all the people taking note of his stance.
“Now, I can see your pens are all writing and I understand he’s missing kicks in games,” the Packers coach said. “The bottom line is this is about performance on Sundays and I have all of the confidence that Mason’s going to get that back because we need him.”
That’s an impressive show of faith, considering Crosby’s performance this year.
He’s now missed five of his last 10 field goal attempts, and is 11-of-18 on the season. He actually missed three yesterday, considering a 50-yard attempt was missed twice (when Lions coach Jim Schwartz called a timeout), spraying them right and left.
Prior to that, McCarthy turned down a chance at a 49-yard field goal attempt to go for a fourth down attempt which failed. Crosby’s second (official) miss was a 38-yarder which would have tied the game at 17 midway through the fourth quarter.
Crosby’s built up some goodwill, mostly by going 24-of-28 last year. But his previous low percentage was 75.0 in 2009 (27-of-36) and he’s at 61.1 percent this season.
It’s noble of the Packers to stand by him, but you wonder if the stance would have been the same if they would have lost by some factor of the six points Crosby left on the field.