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Masthay leaves room for improvement

Jan. 7, 2013
 

Packers punter Tim Masthay didn’t have his best game against the Minnesota Vikings Saturday night.

He punted eight times with a gross average of 37.8. His net average was 34.6.

“I thought he was inconsistent,” said special teams coach Shawn Slocum. “I thought he’s had better nights punting, although he had three inside the 20, which I thought was good … but he had three that I thought he could have hit better.”

Temperatures in the 20s and Lambeau Field’s swirling winds could have been one reason for Masthay’s struggles, although Vikings punter Chris Kluwe had a gross average of 49.6 and a net of 46.2 on five punts.

“Sure, the weather was a factor,” said Slocum. “The wind’s a little squirrely in the stadium and it affects the drop. Still, I think Tim will be the first to tell you he could have punted better (Saturday) night.”

Slocum said he has no reason to think Masthay is in any kind of slump.
“Tim’s fine,” Slocum said. “He’s fighting the weather, fighting the elements, and some days are better than others.”

The Packers will face one of the better punters in the NFL in Andy Lee, who averaged 48.1 yards per punt this season (No. 3 in the NFL) and was tied for the best net average (43.2). Lee was also third in the NFL in placing punts inside the 20-yard line with 36.

“Andy’s a heck of a punter,” said Slocum. “He’s a Pro Bowl-caliber punter and he has the ability to change the field.”

Masthay was No. 26 in gross average (42.9), No. 22 in net average (38.9) and his 30 punts inside the 20 ranked tied for No. 7.

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