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Monday, September 21, 2015

Green Bay Packers Kicker, Punter & Snapper News

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September 20, 2015 - kicker Mason Crosby now leading scorer in team history
"Maybe it was fitting that Mason Crosby would set the Green Bay Packers' all-time scoring record against the Seattle Seahawks. Last season, Crosby probably was the Packers' best player in the NFC Championship Game defeat with four field goals. On Sunday night, Crosby kicked four more without a miss in the Packers' 27-17 victory over the Seahawks at Lambeau Field. Crosby's 13 points gave him 1,057 in a career that started in 2007 as a sixth-round draft choice from Colorado. It surpassed the total of 1,054 that kicker Ryan Longwell accumulated from 1997-'05. 'It's just so special,' said Crosby. 'I've been part of this organization for nine years. The history, the guys that came before me... to be able to hold the record is awesome'." - Journal Sentinel

August 10, 2015 - punter Cody Mandell released
"The Green Bay Packers' first full-fledged punting competition in five years lasted all of 12 days. They apparently didn't need any longer to decide to stick with Tim Masthay. Less than two weeks into training camp, the Packers cut Cody Mandell on Monday despite a respectable showing in practice by the first-year punter." - ESPN

February 12, 2015 - special teams coaching changes
"This off-season — after an abysmal season on special teams — the Green Bay Packers took action. Out was Shawn Slocum as coordinator, in is Ron Zook. Jason Simmons was promoted to assistant special teams coach. And out is Mike McCarthy the offensive play-caller, in is McCarthy as a third special teams coach. The attitude in the special teams room, the Packers hope, will undergo an overhaul. 'That culture's going to change in there,' McCarthy said Thursday, 'I promise you that'." - Journal Sentinel

January 26, 2015 - punter Cody Mandell signed
The team signed former Alabama punter Cody Mandell on Monday, bringing in competition for their punter of five seasons, Tim Masthay. Mandell spent last off-season with the Dallas Cowboys, cut on Aug. 9. His senior year at Alabama, in 2013, he was named to the all-SEC team and was a semifinalist for the Ray Guy Award. After Masthay’s subpar 2014 season, this should come as no surprise. Masthay struggled throughout the year, finishing with a net average of 37 yards per punt (30th in the NFL), a gross average of 44.1 yards (26th) and only 14 punts inside the 20-yard line (32nd). In Green Bay’s 28-22 overtime loss to the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC Championship, he had a net of 35.2 yards with no punts inside the 20. As a whole, the Packers’ special teams ranked 32nd of 32 teams in the Dallas Morning News’ annual rankings. The 6-foot-2, 217-pound Mandell appeared in 52 games at Alabama, averaging a gross of 42.6 yards — 47.1 his senior year — with 58 pinned inside the 20. With the Cowboys, Mandell did get some action in the preseason. He placed all three of his punts inside the 20 for a 43.7 average, but lost the job to Chris Jones." - Journal Sentinel

January 18, 2015 - kicker Mason Crosby hits five field goals in NFC Championship loss
"Kicker Mason Crosby made all five of his field goal attempts in Sunday's 28-22 loss to the Seahawks in the NFC Championship Game. Crosby made kicks of 18, 19, 40, 48 and 48 repsectively. The last kick Crosby drilled with 14 seconds left in the game to tie it at 22 and eventually send the game to overtime." - CBS Sports

January 11, 2015 - kicker Mason Crosby tops the scoring list
"A 30-yard field goal in the third quarter enabled Crosby to pass Ryan Longwell as the team's all-time leading scorer, regular season and playoffs, with 1,121 points. 'It's pretty awesome, even better coming with the win here in the division championship,' said Crosby, who was also good from 40 yards. He finished with eight points on the day and now has 1,122 for his career. 'Obviously I've had some really good years, put a lot of points on the board and done some good things and this organization has paid me back with some of that through tough times sticking with me. I just try to work hard every day and make sure I go out and not take it for granted. Every time I have an opportunity to help this team win that's awesome, that's special. It's kind of surreal thinking about all the great kickers, the fact that I passed Ryan Longwell who had a great career. It's just cool to be here with the Green Bay Packers, who have been here forever and is such a storied organization. It's going to be fun someday to talk to my kids about'." - Packers News

November 16, 2014 - blocked and aborted extra point attempts
"Holder Tim Masthay bobbled a PAT snap, which prevented the extra point from being kicked, while kicker Mason Crosby had another PAT blocked and missed a 50-yard field goal wide right. Late in the game, Masthay also had a punt blocked for the second time this season. The blessing is that the miscues happened in a game whose outcome wouldn’t be affected, but it gives the Packers film to review to clean things up. 'Obviously it was kind of a weird night,' Crosby said. 'Some weird stuff happened on special teams, but the defense played great, offense played great. It’s just like any week, you evaluate it, but it was great to get a big win tonight'.... For the second straight week, Crosby kicked off a whopping 10 times, but this week he was able to boot six touchbacks. He had none last week, and the Bears’ TD return came on the 10th and final kickoff of the night. 'I’ve been a little tired these last couple weeks, kicking off a lot,' Crosby joked. 'I was glad I could get a couple more touchbacks this week and give those guys a break'." - Packers

October 6, 2014 - punter Tim Masthay has career game
"Masthay turned in a career performance in the Green Bay Pakcers' 42-10 win against the Minnesota Vikings last Thursday at Lambeau Field. Thanks to Masthay's performance, the Vikings' average starting field position was their 12-yard line, the Green Bay Press-Gazette reported. Masthay averaged 50.7 yards per punt with a long of 58 yards. The fifth-year punter pinned the Vikings inside their 20-yard line five times — tying a career-high from his rookie season — with only one touchback. 'That was great production with five kicks inside the 20, and we forced them to start seven drives inside the 20,' special teams coordinator Shawn Slocum told the newspaper. 'That helped us. I thought Thursday night was the first time (Masthay) really had a complete game. I felt good about it'." - Lexington Herald-Leader
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September 14, 2014 - Mason Crosby kicks Lambeau record
"Mason Crosby now has the longest field goal kick by a Packer in Lambeau Field. He hit a 55-yarder through the south end zone uprights in the second quarter - but it could have probably been good at 65. And the wind? Well it was blowing pretty good, from the southwest, at least by the looks of one of the flags; the other flags seemed to show a more southern wind. In any case, he was kicking in to, and contending with, the wind on that record-setter. 'That was tricky. It’s tricky out there,' said Crosby. 'I’ve learned to just trust my pre-game and just go out there and hit because if you look at flags, right now in the stadium, with that new addition, it could kind of play some mind games with you. So I just trust what I feel, what I did in pregame, and then just try to hit a good, smooth, consistent ball. If I hit a ball like that every time, the wind is not going to affect it too much. That’s usually my game plan – especially at Lambeau'." - Journal Sentinel

August 2, 2014 - Family Night kicking
"kicker Mason Crosby is picking up right where he left off last season, which to date was the best of his career. Crosby concluded a festive Family Night practice in front of 67,336 fans at Lambeau Field with a perfect 6-for-6 showing on field goal attempts, continuing his strong start to training camp. Crosby’s kicks on Saturday night ranged from 28 to 50 yards and, combined with a pair of 7-for-8 kicking sessions earlier this week, he’s now 20-for-22 this summer, having clearly put last season’s training camp and 'Family Night' struggles behind him." - Packers

June 18, 2014 - summer specialists
“I want to maintain where our kickers are right now,' [special teams coordinator Shawn] Slocum said of Crosby and punter Tim Masthay after Tuesday’s first practice of minicamp, which wraps up Thursday with one final practice. 'If we can go into the season and maintain week-to-week the way they’re striking the ball right now, they’re both explosive, they’re fresh. In fact, I told them that today. We’ve got to maintain this and not outkick ourselves and be fresh and explosive week to week.' In some ways, bringing another kicker in for camp would help do that, giving Crosby a rest. Then again, in order to have a legit competition last summer, Crosby kicked more than he probably had in a camp in years. 'There’s not another guy taking any reps. He gets all the reps,' Slocum said. 'But those guys compete against the league every day.' Crosby has carried over his success into the offseason, at least in practices open to the media. He went 7-for-7 on Tuesday on kicks and was 6-for-7 at the last open organized team activity practice on June 10." - ESPN

June 9, 2014 - no competition for kicker Mason Crosby
"This will be a different training camp for Crosby. Last year, he held off a strong push from Giorgio Tavecchio. This year, he’s the only kicker in camp. Crosby followed up a career-low season of 63.6% with a career-best 89.2%. His 141 points tied a career-high. 'Feeling good,' Crosby said after Sunday’s festivities. 'Got all the rust off from the off-season. Hitting the ball well.' The goal through OTA’s, into training camp is the same as last summer, he said. Crosby is now entering his eighth season in Green Bay, where he has a career 78.7% field-goal percentage. Tavecchio isn't around. In fact, he's now competing for a job in the Detroit Lions' camp. Yet this summer, Crosby is trying to take the same competitive mind-set into camp. The push from Tavecchio ended up helping Crosby rebound. 'The same approach I did last year. Start fresh,' he said. 'Evaluate the past season. And coming into this, I want to be detailed every time I take the field. So every time I’m out on the field, I’m locked in, focused and making sure I get better every day. So I think I’m doing that and I just have to keep doing what I do. Stick with that plan. It seems to be working right now'.” - Journal Sentinel

May 10, 2014 - Vincenzo D'Amato & Paul Layton to tryout
"The annual Green Bay Packers minicamp will take place Friday May 16 through Sunday May 18, and every year the team invites several undrafted players to take part on a tryout basis.
Typically the team leaves a handful of roster spots open for the most impressive of the tryout players. According to the Green Bay Press-Gazette, the list of players invited to tryout for the team includes... Kicker Vincenzo D'Amato, California and Punter Paul Layton, Temple" - Cheesehead TV

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