LaFleur didn’t say specifically that the field snafu caused his change in plans, but he suggested Oakland’s decision to rest all of its starters played into his call.
“We made the adjustments we felt were in the best interest of our football team, and we moved forward,” LaFleur said moments after the Packers lost, 22-21, on a late field goal by the Raiders.
“It was a combination of a lot of things I really don’t want to get into right now. It is what it is. They weren’t playing their guys and I just didn’t want to put our guys at risk.”
With the Packers’ regular-season opener just seven days after next Thursday’s preseason finale, it’s highly unlikely any starters will see the field in that game, either. So Green Bay could be heading to Chicago for Week 1 with the starters playing only two series of preseason football (last week at Baltimore) and quarterback Aaron Rodgers not taking a snap.
LaFleur sounded unconcerned. His mind was much more on the litany of injuries the Packers suffered in this game and what they might mean for roster decisions and lineup availability in two weeks.
“I feel confident in our preparation,” LaFleur said. “Hindsight is 20/20. I know we’re going to get second-guessed every which way, but I’m not too worried about it.
“I’m concerned about how we go about our business and our mindset in that locker room, and I think our guys are confident.”
No updates were given, but the list of players that left Thursday’s game was extensive, headed by rookie first-round pick Rashan Gary. Receiver Equanimeous St. Brown appeared to sustain a nasty ankle injury, while linebacker Curtis Bolton, defensive backs Will Redmond and Mike Tyson, receiver Allen Lazard and offensive lineman Cole Madison all exited. Defensive lineman Tyler Lancaster and defensive back Natrell Jamerson also left the game but later returned.
As for the game itself, second-year QB Tim Boyle got the start and found a rhythm in the second quarter, engineering three consecutive touchdown drives as the Packers took a 21-10 halftime lead.