WINNIPEG, Canada (WBAY) - Oh Canada? No, Canada. After poor field conditions marred the Packers trip north of the border, eliminating the team's preseason dress rehearsal, Winnipeg was dressed down for what transpired.
The game was actually played on an 80-yard field after the end zone turf was deemed unsafe. And, for his part, coach Matt LaFleur did his best to bite his tongue, after having to scratch 33 players before the game, playing no starters in the contest.
"It is what is is and it was the same for both teams, so we made the adjustments that we felt were in the best interests of our team and we moved forward," LaFleur said. "We were going to have all our starters play. It was just one of those deals. We have certainly all played on much worse surfaces in our life. But it was just one of those deals where they weren't playing their starters and we just decided to do the same."
When pressed on the decision not to play starters and not use the end zones in the game, LaFleur tried to avoid further complaints.
"We didn't feel like that was something I wanted to do," LaFleur said. "Because I didn't want to do it. No reason, other than that."
So did the players think the field was dangerous?
"I don't know," said starting safety Adrian Amos, who was held out. "I don't know, really. But field safety matters. This is our livelihood, you don't want anybody to go out there and do something that could have been prevented."
"Yeah, that whole debacle with the field was going on, and decisions were made that we were going to hold our starters out," said quarterback Tim Boyle, who got the start. "But the plan was for me to play after Aaron (Rodgers), so they just kind of moved me up and I got to start, which was fun. I got my first start and did well in the first half."
In the end, it was a 1-point Raiders win in a game that was about everything but the actual contest. LaFleur came away pleased with his defense's tackling one week after issues in Baltimore. And the coach was impressed with Boyle, who got the start today and led three first-half touchdown drives.