Sunday, October 24, 2010
Rapid Reaction: Packers 28, Vikings 24
By Kevin Seifert
GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Let's hit the high points of a wild game at Lambeau Field:
What it means: The Green Bay Packers beat their longtime quarterback Brett Favre for the first time since Favre defected to the Minnesota Vikings. In what could be considered a changing of the guard, quarterback Aaron Rodgers won for only the second time in his career in a game decided by four or fewer points. It was especially poignant to watch Favre, who threw three second-half interceptions, literally limp off the field after suffering a second-half ankle injury. It could well be his final game at Lambeau Field.
What it means II: The Packers improved to 4-3 and are in a virtual tie for first place in the NFC North with the Chicago Bears. The Vikings fell to 2-4.
Close but ... The Vikings gained possession at their 17-yard line with 6 minutes, 7 seconds remaining. Leaning heavily on tailback Adrian Peterson, they moved the ball to as close as the 15 yard line, converting two fourth-down calls and getting a 26-yard play on a screen pass to Peterson. But consecutive penalties on tight end Visanthe Shiancoe pushed the ball back 20 yards, and officials reversed a 35-yard touchdown pass to receiver Percy Harvin after his second foot was revealed to have landed out of bounds. It was the third Vikings touchdown to be reversed by instant replay. Ultimately, the drive ended at the 21-yard line when Favre's pass to Moss in the end zone was too high.
Missed opportunity: This needs to be noted for a team that entered the game with 11 losses in its past 12 contests decided by four points or fewer. The Packers had a chance to seal the game following Favre's third interception, but the drive stalled at their 44-yard line. Fortunately for them, Tim Masthay's punt pinned the Vikings at their 17-yard line, pushing the Vikings 83 yards away from the score they would have needed.
Injury report: The Packers were down to three defensive linemen for most of the game after Cullen Jenkins strained a hamstring during pregame warm-ups and Ryan Pickett appeared to reinjure his problematic ankle. They compensated by using a fair amount of two-man lines in their nickel package.
What's next: Both teams are on the road next Sunday. The Packers will play at the New York Jets and the Vikings will travel to the New England Patriots.