Packers Win NFC North: Lock Up Fourth Seed

Written off, on the brink of collapse, unrest within the ranks, Rodgers in decline and with a 4-6 record pundits, writers and numerous media outlets could smell blood in the water. The Green Bay Packers found themselves in desperate need of some regular season magic to make the post season. Aaron Rodgers, played the part of a great magician as the Packers pulled a rabbit out of the hat running the table to secure the fourth seed in the NFC with a 31-24 victory over the Lions, who themselves made the post season thanks to a Giants victory over the Redskins.

Both teams got off to a slow start as they failed to move the chains on their first two possessions, Matthew Stafford was guilty of overthrowing Golden Tate on a third down for what would surely have put the Lions up by a score. The Lions utilized running back Zack Zenner as they mustered up an 11 play drive to set up a 39 yard field goal attempt for Matt Prater.

Prater’s miss started off the second quarter before the Packers marched downfield on a 10 play drive sealed by a Aaron Ripkowski touchdown, kick-starting a scoring frenzy by both teams. The Lions responded with an 80 yard,11 play drive of their own, running back Zack Zenner going in for the score. After a quick three and out by the Packer the Lions were once again on the board, Stafford hit Golden Tate at the end of an 11 play drive (during which Clay Matthews dropped a certain interception) giving the Lions a 14-7 lead with 23 seconds left. Rodgers responded hitting Geronimo Allison for 39 yards following a mix up in the Lions defense, before Mason Crosby converted a 53 yard attempt making the score 14-10 at the half.

Green Bay opened up the second half with another scoring drive. Jordy Nelson who’d been held to just one catch during the first half (Daruis Slay on the coverage) featured throughout as the Packers marched downfield on a 10 play drive. Nelson’s grab on a quick slant setup a touchdown reception for fellow wideout Devante Adams as the Packers regained the lead (17-14).

The Packers extended their lead at the beginning of the fourth quarter as Rodgers threw his third touchdown of the day, Geronimo Allison the benefactor giving the Packers a nine point lead (missed PAT). With ten minutes left in the game the Lions had plenty of time to turn things around, a 54 yard Matt Prater field goal made it a one possession game (23-17) with 7.42 left. Rodgers however wasn’t going to let Lions back into the game as once again he displayed his scrambling ability and elusiveness within the pocket to hook up with Devante Adams (Rodger’s fourth TD pass of the game) for another score, a two point conversion made it a 14 point game (31-17)with time against the Lions. Stafford marched his offense down the field for hitting veteran wideout Anquan Boldin for a 35 yard score in what proved to be too little too late as the Packers held on for a 31-24 victory.

Mark Teece

Aspiring NFL writer currently tapping plastic square buttons on a larger plastic rectangle, resulting in this website/blog that covers the wonderful world of pigskin. Former cornerback/safety for the Crewe Railroaders (UK).

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