Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 10/4/13
Mason Crosby may not have made any drastic mechanical or mental changes to his approach to kicking field goals after a season in which he ranked last among NFL kickers with a 63.6 percent conversion rate but there is one change that he made in the offseason that stands out to him. “I do feel like this training camp and this offseason I did a good job of not holding onto much” Crosby said. “Situations happened there are missed kicks and we moved on. “(I) just really dove into my relationships with my family and friends and making sure the relationships I have are intact. Those things are extremely important and I think those things help you get through a lot of stuff.” By “not holding on to much” including a potentially disastrous Family Night Scrimmage performance on Aug. 3 Crosby also learned the benefit of not getting caught up in his job when he had the chance to be home where he focused his attention on his family – wife Molly three-year-old son Nolan and four-month-old daughter Charlotte. “I go home and we don't talk much about football. We have two kids now and we just enjoy each other” Crosby said. “You've got to really see what is important and make sure that each thing has its place. I put a ton of importance on what I do here so I want to give them all my time and all my effort when I'm at home and then really lock in whenever I'm here at the stadium “I think for me it helped me to move on. If there’s a missed kick or missed situation I just move on a lot quicker and just go to the next one.” Crosby may “move on” from the field goals he misses but it doesn’t mean he forgets them. A year after making a career-best 85.7 percent of his field-goal attempts Crosby suffered through a stretch where he made just 12 of 24 kicks (50 percent) and finished the regular season having to make his last four kicks just to end up at 21 for 33. The kicker said he learned from his struggles last season and the missed kicks were just a reminder of how important his work during the week is in preparation for each game. “I've really taken a step in the right direction in making sure I really put in the work during the week so that I feel as prepared as possible” Crosby said. “If anything what last year was and what early in camp was was just a reminder of those things that I really need to dive into every week and make sure that I put in that work so I'm prepared when that game comes and when that situation comes.” Crosby’s recent body of work – he is 4-for-4 on the season and has made 16 straight field goals dating back to Week 15 of last season against Tennessee and including the six field goals he made in preseason play – shows that the new situational approach he has taken is working. “For me it's all about situations all about different opportunities that are going to present themselves” Crosby said. “I kind of put myself in those as much as possible mentally and physically on the practice field so when game time comes that's all I have to think about.” For now it appears to be working. Crosby survived training-camp challenges from Giorgio Tavecchio and Zach Ramirez and while he accepted a $2.4 million pay cut before the season started he can earn it all back if he kicks the way he believes he can.
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