A message to young kickers: Don’t ever watch Sunday’s Green Bay Packers vs. Cincinnati Bengals game.
The two placekickers, Mason Crosby for the Packers and Evan McPherson for the Bengals, delivered one of the ugliest displays of kicking we’ve seen in a while.
The game was tied at 22 late in the fourth quarter. Here’s how the ensuing drives went:
— Crosby misses from 36 with 2:14 left in the fourth.
— McPherson misses from 57 (hitting the right upright) with 26 seconds left in the fourth.
— Crosby misses from 51 as time expires in the fourth.
— Bengals interception
— Crosby misses from 40 with 8:12 left in OT
— McPherson misses (but he thought he made it) from 49 with 4:19 left in OT
— Crosby hits from 49 with 1:58 to play. Game over.
While there were some tough kicks, and McPherson almost won it in the fourth with an impressive display of leg strength, it simply was an underwhelming performance from both guys.
“It’s kind of crazy I’m standing up here with a win instead of talking about those misses,” Crosby said after the game, via The Athletic’s Matt Schneidman.
“I (was) just focused on my next one. That was a crazy end to that game, that’s insanity. The fact that we kept getting opportunities, you’ve got to give it up to our team, the way we fought to get into that position again — I just wanted so badly to come through there. It’s what I do, and I was really happy to hit that last one.
McPherson is a rookie kicker, and one who shows great promise. It doesn’t appear the Bengals are wavering on his ability after a tough loss.
“We’ve got a lot of faith in Evan from those distances,” Bengals head coach Zac Taylor said after the game, via CLNS Media’s Mike Petraglia. “We’ve just got a lot of faith in him, going both ways. We’ve got a lot of faith in Evan, we’ll continue doing that going forward. That second one almost went over the uprights. He almost hit the top of the uprights from (49) yards out because he’s got a strong leg, we believe in him, he’s going to hit a lot of those.”
“Honestly, I thought the refs were playing a game on us when I looked down there and they were doing the no good motion,” McPherson said. “I thought they were playing a game because I struck it really well and was real confident it was going through.”
For the Packers, it is just the bottom line that seemed to matter.
“I don’t remember how many he missed. I just remember the one he made,” wide receiver Davante Adams said.