The Las Vegas Raiders’ defensive end Maxx Crosby, who created havoc in the Green Bay Packers’ backfield for the duration of Monday Night Football, was awarded the AFC’s Defensive Player of the Week honors after his Week 5 performance against the green and gold. On the box score for the game, Crosby was credited with four tackles for loss and a sack in the 17-13 win.
Crosby’s success on Monday was frustrating for Packers fans, who had heard all week that the offense really only needed to have a gameplan for the Raiders’ singular stud on the defensive side of the ball. At times, it did look like head coach Matt LaFleur was calling plays to limit Crosby’s impact, but other times there were clear mismatches on the field.
...I'm sure the TEs made every one of these blocks on the whiteboard. Crosby's disruption was unreal last night.— Ben Fennell (@BenFennell_NFL) October 10, 2023
Darts inside of the TE double team on Play 1... Too quick upfield/off the ball for the split flow block on Play 2... pic.twitter.com/TeZYtrOTpy
A couple of examples of plays in which the Packers were clearly mismatched with the personnel facing one-on-one blocks against Crosby were highlighted by CBS producer Ben Fennell on Twitter/X. Twice, Crosby was able to record a tackle for loss because of one-on-one blocks against tight ends. The first came on a down block from rookie second-round pick Luke Musgrave, who allowed Crosby to get penetration on a gap run. The second came via third-round rookie Tucker Kraft, who lost a slice block to Crosby on the backside of a zone play.
Even when the Packers had a “pass-rush plan” for Crosby, their execution wasn’t great. On one “shot play” attempt, Green Bay used three bodies to attempt to slow Crosby down on a pass that was supposed to be thrown deep down the field. Ultimately, Crosby ran through two tight ends and a running back and sacked quarterback Jordan Love before he could get the pass off.
One of the more extraordinary stats from the game is that not only did Crosby dominate on a snap-to-snap basis, but he also didn’t need a breather. Crosby played every single defensive snap for the Raiders on Monday. It probably didn’t help the Packers that their offense wasn’t able to keep the Las Vegas defense on the field for very long, which only kept Crosby better rested.