Family support provides motivation for Crosby

Ryan Wood
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GREEN BAY – Mason Crosby’s game-winning, 51-yard field goal Sunday against the Dallas Cowboys sent teammates sprinting across AT&T Stadium’s field in celebration and sent Green Bay Packers fans into hysterics over another NFC title game appearance.

Green Bay Packers kicker Mason Crosby (2) celebrates his long field goal to take the lead late in the fourth quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX Sunday, January 15, 2017.

It also gave his family some much-needed joy.

A month ago, Crosby’s sister-in-law was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Brittany Crosby, married to Mason’s brother Rees, is only 27. She recently started chemotherapy, preventing Brittany and Rees from joining a large representation of the Crosby clan at Sunday’s game, just up the road from their home in Georgetown, Texas.

“He’s so pumped,” Crosby said of his brother's reaction to his success. “He sends me motivational texts before every game. He’s done that, I think, my whole career. He sends pretty epic motivational texts, really put a lot of thought into them. So I appreciated him so much, and his support over my career.

“Just think about them all the time. They’re very young and battling cancer, it’s tough. So, yeah, just try to support them as much as possible.”

They support him, too. Rees and Brittany have followed the Packers' run to the NFC title game, even from afar. Before the playoffs began, they sent a token that serves as a good-luck charm.

It’s a green wristband that says three words: “We stand together.”

Crosby wore it for both playoff games this season. He’s made each of his three field goals against the Cowboys and New York Giants, including a pair longer than 50 yards inside Sunday’s two-minute warning, extending his NFL record of 23 consecutive postseason field goals.

The wristband wasn’t visible underneath a white, long-sleeve shirt against the Giants at frigid Lambeau Field, but Crosby could showcase it Sunday inside climate-controlled AT&T Stadium.

“I had it on,” Crosby said, “and sometimes just depending on who it is, they might make you take stuff off or cover it up. They didn’t say anything. Hopefully I don’t get fined.”

Crosby said he watched replays of his kick about 10 times, including the TV broadcast copy. It’s unusual for him to watch the TV copy, Crosby said, but Sunday’s game winner certainly was an unusual kick.

“That's my biggest kick that I've had,” Crosby said, “and I've had a 10-year career here.”

After it sailed through the uprights, Crosby met with family in attendance. He also heard from his brother.

“I know they were here in spirit,” Crosby said.

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