Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy has talked about routinely going for two after scoring a touchdown, rather than kicking the extra point, this season. To do so, you want a play with a 60 percent or greater success rate.
That play and player were unveiled on November 23, 2014 in a 24-21 Packers’ win in Minnesota. From the 1-yard line, Eddie Lacy hurtled himself over the backs of his linemen and landed hard, three yards into the end zone — and that was without reaching out with the ball.
It was a “dive” or “plunge” play that can be made through the smallest of gaps, or by going over the backs of your blockers if there is no gap. It’s a quick-hitting thrust, giving the defense no time to penetrate.
It calls for commitment and a massive or rugged running back. Most of all though, you need someone with the guts to hurl one’s body into the abyss.
Never mind his Lambeau leaps, Lacy creates the needed momentum with his massive size and leg strength. His rocket-like thrust in that important win against the Vikings gave the Packers a whole new persona: smashmouth football.
The NFL’s most notable practitioner of the touchdown leap/dive/plunge — which long-time Packer fans had to endure all too often — was Chicago Bears running back Walter Payton. Good company, I’d say.
So how did the Packers capitalize on this new offensive weapon?
They retired the play, of course. Typical Mike McCarthy…
This play should be a major option on the Packers’ two-point conversion menu. And it should be automatic whenever the Packers are at the 1-yard line, or have a third or fourth down and a yard or so to go.