Before the start of the preseason, the Green Bay Packers had some pending questions regarding their football team. Would Mason Crosby be the kicker for the season or would he be run out of town? Would two-time national champion Eddie Lacy emerge as the leading running back as a rookie? Would Jarrett Boykin or Jeremy Ross take over for the departed Greg Jennings? Would tight end Jermichael Finley finally catch the football instead of complaining that he doesn’t get it enough? After two weeks of preseason football, some of the answers to those burning questions are starting to become clear; for now anyway.
The “for now” part is directed mostly towards Mason Crosby. Crosby’s season last year was suspenseful. Every time he lined up to kick a field goal, it caused Packers fans like me to hold our breath and pray that the ball snuck its way through the uprights. For that reason, head coach Mike McCarthy brought in Giorgio Tavecchio as Crosby’s competition. After Friday’s game against the St. Louis Rams, Crosby took the lead in the battle, going three for three, hitting from 34, 48, and 30. Tavechhio did his part, making one field goal from 38 yards, but missed another from 49 yards. Crosby might have the lead now, but this guessing game could still remain a mystery throughout the season.
Although it was just a preseason game, Eddie Lacy’s performance showed why he might be a second-round steal. Lacy had eight carries for 40 yards, but those stats are meaningless when you look at the highlights. Lacy was doing his best Marshawn Lynch impression by evading tacklers left and right, acting like a human pinball. He also demonstrated how versatile he is by showing off his spin move on a few Rams defenders. No other running back for the Pack had more than 15 yards. The rookie out of Alabama looks like he just might solve the Packers’ running back problems.
With Greg Jennings gone and Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb nursing injuries, Aaron Rodgers had to find new targets to throw the ball to. Tight end Jermichael Finley showed why he is a great preseason target. Finley had four receptions for 78 yards, and also showed his ability to catch the ball, dropping zero of the passes thrown his way. Jarrett Boykin, more so than Jeremy Ross, showed that he is ready to be a part of the Packers offense. Boykin caught two passes for 33 yards, while Ross caught only one pass for 11 yards. Rookie Tyrone Walker, who impressed during the first preseason game, showed why the preseason can be very meaningless, only catching one pass for 15 yards. I personally find the preseason to be meaningless because none of these stats will really signify anything until September 8.
For what it’s worth, fourth string quarterback B.J. Coleman did throw a touchdown pass to tight end Jake Stoneburner, which was the Packers’ first and only touchdown of the preseason. Who would have thought the Packers would get only one touchdown through two games? But again, it is only the preseason. The Packers did improve to 1 and 1 by winning the game, 19-7. But as we know, records are pointless in the preseason. Just ask the New England Patriots, who were winless during the 2007 preseason. They went on to have a perfect regular season and their only loss was to the Giants in the Super Bowl.
Next up for the Packers is the Seattle Seahawks. I think something controversial happened when these two last met, but that’s another story for another day.