When all hell broke loose on that first Monday night of the NFL regular season, as the Oakland Raiders turned every special teams play into an adventure because of an injury to their long-snapper, Brett Goode wasn’t watching.
“I fell asleep,” the Green Bay Packers long-snapper said Friday. “I got a bunch of phone calls the next day.”
That night perfectly summed up Goode’s gig: No one notices you until you do something wrong, or something happens to you and people realize that what you do is important.
“That’s OK. You don’t really want every single play analyzed, like every single ball Aaron (Rodgers) throws,” Goode said, referring to the Packers quarterback – who also happens to be one of his best friends. “I think it just shows the importance of (long-snapper), just like every position. Even if no one else knows, the packers know, and that’s all that matters."
Clearly, the Packers do know, as news broke Friday that Goode had inked a three-year contract extension on Oct. 13 that will keep him with the Packers through 2015. Goode, who was set to be a free agent after this season, received a $325,000 signing bonus, with base salaries of $700,000 for 2012, $715,000 for 2013, $730,000 for 2014 and $870,000 for 2015, according to the NFL Players Association’s salary information.
“I think that you always just need to look at the situation when you don’t have someone like Brett Goode,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “You’re happy for Brett because he comes here every day, he’s the same guy every day, he performs all of the time. So it’s always good to see your guys earn the next contract. I’m very happy for him and his family.”
The Packers now have their three specialists – Goode, punter Tim Masthay and kicker Mason Crosby – all locked up through 2015.
“You look at the battery of punter, kicker and snapper, that’s a very important group. They spend mostly all of their time together,” McCarthy said. “The personalities of the three guys is very important. They lean on one another. They help correct one another. I think they’re very honest as far as their time together, professionally and personally. They’re a good group. The nice part about it is you look at their age group, they still have time to grow and improve.”
That includes Goode, who has not had an errant snap since arriving in Green Bay in 2008.
“I haven’t had bad, bad ones, but I’ve obviously had balls that I haven’t been happy with,” Goode said. “That just makes you want to go out and improve on that and be able to improve on the mechanics and move on from there.”
The Packers signed Goode after final cuts were made in 2008. They’d just lost their new long-snapper, J.J. Jansen, to a knee injury suffered in the preseason finale against Tennessee, and even though another long-snapper who’d been in camp with them, Thomas Gafford, had been released by Chicago and was available, they opted for Goode.
Goode, who’d spent the previous two offseasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars, was out of football after long-snapping in college at Arkansas. He was working construction in Fort Smith, Ark., pouring concrete when he got the call that the Packers wanted to sign him.
“Construction’s not doing good right now so I’m glad I got out of it,” Goode joked Friday. “I was doing that to go finish my degree and hopefully one day I was going to be able to get into coaching at a high school. I’m in no rush to do that.
“The second time you get cut, it’s tough. It’s tough to stay positive. Just talking to my agent, we said we were going to stay with it until he told me, ‘No.’ Things work out for a reason.
“(I’m) living the dream. That’s what it is.”
Listen to Jason Wilde every weekday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on “Green & Gold Today,” and follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/jasonjwilde.