Bakhtiari: Hail Mary a momentum builder
Green Bay Packers left tackle David Bakhtiari co-hosted Monday's Clubhouse Live, Gannett Wisconsin Media's live weekly football show. Packers linebacker Jayrone Elliott was Bakhtiari's guest.
Among the topics they touched on were Aaron Rodgers' Hail Mary toss to Richard Rodgers, injuries and momentum. The show can be seen live at The Clubhouse Sports Pub & Grill in downtown Appleton or at clubhouselive.com.
Here are select and edited answers from the interview:
Q: What was the most impressive aspect of that 61-yard, Hail Mary touchdown toss for you as you look back on the play that gave the Packers a 27-23 victory over the Lions last Thursday? Was it simply the throw itself?
Bakhtiari: I think it's ironic. (Tight end) Richard (Rodgers) is not supposed to go get the ball. (Chuckling) That's like the second time a tight end has not done what they're supposed to do, but it actually worked in our favor. Richard made a hell of a play, honestly. And words can't describe the throw. He got time to step into it and - we kind of make fun of him that he's getting old - but man, that was like a 24-year-old throwing that football. He can throw a football. That thing was going. It took me three seconds to find it. First, I kind of looked more - not that high up. ... That thing was up there in like the rafters or beams.
Elliott: I stood up on a bench after the face mask penalty. And then he threw the pass and completed it, and I'm just standing there looking around for a flag. When it happened, I was like, 'This is unreal.'
Q: You had to leave the game for a bit because of injury. And with others already out because of their own injuries, the Packers' offensive line at that point was Josh Walker, Josh Sitton, JC Tretter, Lane Taylor and Don Barclay. Who would have been the next man in had one of those guys gone down?
Bakhtiari: I'm not the coach, but I would assume either a tight end or (long snapper) Brett Goode goes in. Brett Goode would go to center and then move JC over. I remember last year, which is why I'm assuming, I saw for Atlanta - they didn't have a tackle, so they brought their tight end to play tackle, and they had max protection on the left side. It was absolutely hilarious. ... It was center, guard, tight end.
Q: Do you think that Hail Mary play can act as a momentum builder for the team as it prepares for the stretch run of the season?
Bakhtiari: Is it momentum-building? Sure. It was a spark. We were all ecstatic. It really kind of put the exclamation point on the whole six weeks. We went through a lot from the bye. We had six weeks, two back-to-back road games against undefeated teams. Four division games in (19) days and three (games) in 12 (days). A lot of people were burned out. And after all the things we went through, the ebbs and flows and ups and downs, to have that type of spark for victory right at the very end, it really put some life into us. I'm excited to see when we go back (to work).