The Green Bay Packers are having quite the up and down season. In week three, they were on the losing end of one of the most controversial NFL games in recent memory, where the replacement referees possibly cost them a victory over the Seattle Seahawks. Last week, the regular referees almost cost Green Bay a victory over the New Orleans Saints, with questionable non-calls of their own. In week five, against the upstart Indianapolis Colts, the Green Bay Packers found themselves with the short end of the stick once again, as they lost one of the biggest upsets in the NFL this season.
In the upcoming days, you’re going to hear many talking heads, experts, and media outlets give excuse after excuse as to why the Packers couldn’t close out this young Colts team. Yes, the Packers suffered tough injuries. Yes, the Colts were playing with a heavy heart and a chip on their shoulder. The truth about the loss is honestly much more black and white. The Packers can’t blame the referees for this shocking defeat. The Packers had every opportunity to steal the thunder from the Colts late in the game, and to walk out of Lucas Oil Stadium with a victory on Sunday. The Packers, instead, shot themselves in the foot several times in the fourth quarter. Green Bay choked, plain and simple.
The eventual downfall began after the Packers scored their final touchdown after a quick two-play drive. The Packers went for the two-point conversion, but failed. The Colts then marched down the field for what would be the game winning touchdown. The Colts went for a two-point conversion of their own. The conversion succeeded, putting Indianapolis up by three points 30-27.
Green Bay and the defending NFL MVP still had a shot. With less than a minute left in the game and two timeouts to spare, the Packers made their way into long field goal territory. The final two plays of the game was really were the Packers uncharacteristically shot themselves in the foot. With less than ten seconds remaining in regulation, the Packers looked to be lining up for one more play. Possibly they would take a shot at the end zone, or most likely they would try for a quick pass play to the sideline, making the game-tying field goal a bit more workable.
That last offensive play never got a chance to see the light of day, as Green Bay inexplicably ran out of time on the play clock. The Packers were forced to use their final time out, and had no choice but to try for the 52-yard field goal. In one final shot to the gut, Mason Crosby’s field goal attempt hooked wide right. Just like that, the game was over. Colts win, Colts win.
Taking nothing away from the effort put out by Indianapolis, the Packers really made a hard-fought game end up like quite the head-scratcher in the final moments. Tomorrow is another day, and next week is another game, but a loss like this could really sting for a while if the Green Bay Packers let it.