The Packer Fan Minute

Packers Strike Gold By Burying 49ers, 34-16


This was another BIG win for the Packers. They needed it to keep pace in the NFC playoff hunt. And realistically, we are 8-4 today and watching the playoffs from home. That is almost unheard of, as this has been a crazy year, 8-4 in the NFC North is pretty much a lock for a playoff spot, but this year, not so much. But there’s nothing the Packers can do about all of that, so they aren’t concerning themselves with it. They’re only concerned with their own game these days, and they took care of business on Sunday with a 34-16 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in front of 70,575 at Lambeau Field. The Packers also played Sunday's game with the blue throwback jerseys, gold circle numbers and brown helmets while recalling the 1929 Acme Packers first championship team.

“Until you get to 10 wins, you’re just wasting time, you’re wasting conversation,” Head Coach Mike McCarthy said of the playoff talk and scoreboard watching. “You need to keep your focus on the next game.” I like his thinking ONE game at a time. Just win out and then we don't have to worry about making the playoffs or what other teams MIGHT be doing.

This game was another good one to watch, the Packers did start slow, trailing 6-0 through a quarter and a half and leading just 14-13 at halftime after allowing San Francisco tight end Vernon Davis to break free for a 66-yard touchdown right before the half and that kind of had me thinking this was going to be a heart breaker. But the Packers took control in the second half, scoring on four straight possessions. The dominance started with a phenomenal 61-yard catch-and-run for a touchdown by receiver Donald Driver, which McCarthy called “the biggest play in the game” and quarterback Aaron Rodgers called “one of the most amazing plays I’ve seen here.” “I didn’t know what was going on,” said Driver, who after the game admitted he was dying to see the play on the highlights, because everyone had been telling him how amazing it was. “I just started ducking and stepping back and ducking again, and before I knew it, I had three guys, and I saw the end zone. One thing is, if I’m there, it’s going to be hard to deny me, and I was able to get in.” And Quickie made the whole Packers bench stand up and cheer and made the whole Lambeau crowd to say WOW! It was one for the ages and one that only Don could pull off.

Rodgers, who surpassed 3,000 yards passing on the season and ran his interception-free streak to a career-best 177 passes, which is second all-time in franchise history. Rodgers was 21 of 30 for 298 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. Rookie RB James Starks recorded 73 yards on 18 carries (4.1 avg.), the highest yardage total by a Packers rookie running back in his first game since Ralph Earhart posted 78 yards in his debut back on Sept. 17, 1948, at Boston. After the game Starks said; “It felt like two years, It was a long time, but I was anxious just to get out there and play with my teammates, play with A-Rod. Just the fans here at Lambeau, to finally get to run out there, it was an exciting moment for me. I just took it all in. I was just like an excited little kid out there." He did a fine job and I hope that he has a long career with the Packers. He also did a fine job on special teams, and actually get the ball twice on returns. With Starks running well, you could see that Brandon Jackson had a little extra burst in his runs, and that just shows that competition is good and can make you better.

Heros: Aaron Rodgers for the noted above. MVP! MVP! MVP! Defensive end Cullen Jenkins who had his first two-sack game of the season and pushed his season total to seven sacks, a new career high, surpassing his 6½ back in 2006. But he re-injured his calf and did not return. Greg Jennings caught six passes for 122 yards and a pair of touchdowns for the Packers.

Boos: To The WHOLE ENTIRE REFEREE Unit. Very Poor Calling of a Packers Home Game! K Mason Crosby for hitting the goal post, Come On MAN!

Cool Fact: For the first time in franchise history the Packers have four wide receivers with at least 35 receptions in one season. Jennings leads the team with 57 receptions, followed by Driver with 38, Jones with 37 and Nelson with 36. RB Brandon Jackson also has 36. The last time the Packers had five players, regardless of position, with at least 35 catches in one season was 1997 (receivers Antonio Freeman and Robert Brooks, running backs Dorsey Levens and William Henderson, and tight end Mark Chmura).

Up next is the pesky Lions, and they have been playing good football and we need to focus on them for next week. But also hoping that the Vikes can beat the Giants, Bears lose to the Pats and then all things will be good in the Land of Cheese.

GO! PACK GO!

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