INDIANAPOLIS – Brandon Bostick, whose gaffe in the NFC Championship Game was costly for the Green Bay Packers, was claimed off waivers by the Vikings on Wednesday.
The 25-year-old will compete with current tight ends Kyle Rudolph, Rhett Ellison and Chase Ford for a roster spot.
The Packers lost the NFC Championship Game 28-22 at Seattle on Jan. 18 in overtime. The Seahawks scored a go-ahead touchdown in regulation after Bostic fumbled an onside kick with 2 minutes, 9 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter and the Packers leading 19-14. Bostick was supposed to block on the play to allow Jordy Nelson to recover the kick but instead leapt into the air and never really got his hands on the ball. Chris Matthews recovered for Seattle, which eventually took a 22-19 lead on a touchdown and two-point conversion.
The Packers forced overtime with a late field goal before Seattle won on the first possession of overtime. Green Bay special teams coordinator Shawn Slocum was later fired by head coach Mike McCarthy.
Bostick was waived Tuesday and tweeted, “Thankful To Spend The First 3 Years Of My Career In GB. Unfortunately My Time There Has Ended. I Appreciate The Support From Everyone In GB!”
After the title game loss, Bostic was savaged by fans on Twitter (@Bostick11) but was credited by teammates with fielding tough questions.
“I was supposed to block,” he said after the game. “I just reacted to the ball. I thought I could get it. Obviously, I couldn’t.”
“I felt I had my hands on the ball, and it just slipped away. I just have to move on, I guess … I really don’t know what to say.”
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, in his postgame interview, said: “You can’t let them complete a pass for a touchdown on a fake field goal, you can’t give an onside kick and you can’t not get any first downs in the first quarter and expect to win. And that’s on top of being really poor in the red zone in the first half. Put it all together and that’s how you lose games.”
In 24 career games over three years in Green Bay, Bostick caught nine passes for 123 yards and two touchdowns.
Bostick, 6-3 and 250 pounds, played basketball and football at Division II Newberry (S.C.) College.