Mason Crosby has etched his name in Packers history with clutch field goals, records he set along the way and durability by never missing a game over 16 years.
But his time kicking inside Lambeau Field is likely over unless something changes in the offseason. The Packers made that clear when they drafted Anders Carlson in the sixth round of the 2023 NFL draft. It was the first time the Packers drafted a kicker since they picked Crosby in 2007 in the same round.
Here’s what we know about Crosby and the Packers’ kicking situation.
Is Mason Crosby retired?
When last season ended, Crosby said he had no plans to retire. He will turn 39 on Sept. 3, a week before the 2023 season kicks off.
Crosby is not on the active roster. He is a free agent.
What did Mason Crosby’s wife, Molly, say that indicated he’s done with the Packers?
When gold-medalist gymnast Simone Biles asked her Twitter followers last week for recommendations in Green Bay after her husband, Jonathan Owens, signed with the Packers, Crosby’s wife, Molly, replied with a tweet that signaled their time in Green Bay was done. The tweet started with saying, “Sad we will miss you, we just ended a 16 year run with the team,” before she praised Green Bay’s stores and restaurants and noting how they “loved their time there.” The tweet has since been deleted and rewritten to exclude the part about Crosby’s career.
What have the Packers said about Mason Crosby?
Despite Carlson’s selection, special teams coordinator Rich Bisaccia and general manager Brian Gutekunst have said a Crosby return could still be possible.
At the NFL owners meetings in March, Gutekunst praised Crosby for his play in 2022, but said the team’s salary cap situation could keep Crosby off the roster.
“We’ll never close the door,” Gutekunst said. “We’ll kind of see where that goes. Mason is the all-time leading scorer in this franchise’s history; he had a good year this past year. Again, we’re limited a little bit financially, but we’d never say never.”
Bisaccia echoed Gutekunst’s comments this week.
“We’re still in conversation,” Bisaccia said about Crosby’s future in Green Bay. “I think Brian’s spoken that the door’s not closed and (Crosby’s) not on anybody’s team yet. I still think there’s play in Mason, so we’ll see what the future holds. I know he’s excited for what’s next for him in my conversations with him.”
What are Mason Crosby’s career stats with the Packers?
Crosby is the Packers’ all-time leader in points with 1,918.
He has made 395 of his 485 field goals (81.4%).
Crosby has made 733 of 755 extra points (97.1%).
He played in 258 games with the Packers, the most of any kicker in franchise history (Ryan Longwell is second with 144).
Crosby’s career-long field goal was 58 yards in 2012.
How long has Mason Crosby been with the Packers?
Crosby finished his 16th season with the Packers after the 2022 season.
The Packers selected Crosby in the sixth round of the 2007 NFL draft out of Colorado. He earned the starting job as a rookie and never relinquished it.
In 2022, he was the second-longest tenured player on the team, behind Aaron Rodgers.
What were Crosby’s stats in 2022 and during his career?
Crosby had a bounce-back season for field-goal percentage, hitting 86.2% of his kicks, though that mark was still just 19th in the NFL.
And his touchback percentage on kickoffs dropped significantly in 2022 (20.3%). In 2019, his touchback percentage was a career-best 62%. But it’s been dipping each year since.
He made just 73.5% of his field goals in 2021. That total was his lowest since the 2012 season, when he made 63.6%.
But throughout Crosby’s career whenever he had a poor season, he always improved the next. After his career-low season in 2012, he made 89.2% of his field goals in 2013 and tied a career high in total points at 141.
Then after his field-gal percentage dipped again to 78.9% in 2017 he improved to 81.1% in 2018, 91.7% in 2019 before a perfect 16-for-16 season in 2020, including 4-of-4 from 50 yards or more. He did miss four extra points that year, however.
What were the most memorable kicks of Crosby’s career?
The 2016 NFC divisional playoff game against the Dallas Cowboys will be included on any Crosby highlight reel. First, he gave the Packers a 3-point lead on his incredible 56-yard field goal with just 1:33 left in the game. Then, after the Cowboys tied the game, he drilled a made-for-movie-like 51-yard field goal inside the left crossbar to give the Packers the win, 34-31. Two 50-yard-plus kicks against the Cowboys in the playoffs was the stuff of legends.
Another memorable day for Crosby came in San Francisco on “Sunday Night Football” against the 49ers early in the 2021 season that also involved two field goals from over 50 yards.
With Green Bay trailing, 28-27, Crosby stepped up with three seconds left and was perfect from 51 yards, setting off a wild celebration to give the Packers a 30-27 walkoff win. He also made a 54-yard kick earlier in the game.
He kept the Packers’ perfect season alive in 2011 when he made a 30-yard field goal as time expired against the New York Giants on the road to give the Packers a 38-35 win in Week 13.
His clutch gene was here from the beginning. In his first game as a rookie in 2007, to kick off the season, Packers fans got a glimpse of what was to come when he made a 42-yard field goal with two seconds left, giving Green Bay a 16-13 win.
More: Packers rookie Anders Carlson tasked with extending impressive kicking lineage inside Lambeau Field
More: Packers add kicker, defensive linemen, quarterback and wide receivers in Day 3 picks in the 2023 NFL draft
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This article originally appeared on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Will Mason Crosby be back with the Packers in 2023? It’s possible.