Packer rally ties game with Vikings
GREEN BAY (SportsNetwork.com) - The Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings played to a 26-26 tie at Lambeau Field.
Trailing 23-7 early in the fourth quarter, the Packers scored 16 unanswered points with Matt Flynn under center to send the game into overtime.
Mason Crosby and Blair Walsh each made field goals for their respective teams in the extra session, but neither team got much going on offense after that.
It was the first tie in the NFL since Nov. 11, 2012, when the 49ers and Rams played to a 24-24 deadlock.
For the Vikings, it was their first tie since 1978 against the Packers. Green Bay played to a tie for the first time since 1987 versus the Broncos.
The Packers got the ball to start overtime. A defensive holding penalty on 3rd-and-9 gave the home team a fresh set of downs. Jordy Nelson and James Jones caught passes of 15 and 22 yards, respectively, to move the ball to the Minnesota 41-yard line. Jarrett Boykin followed with a nice 34-yard grab along the left sideline. Green Bay, though, was unable to find the end zone and Crosby made a 20-yard field goal.
Since Green Bay only got a field goal, the Vikings had a chance to tie the game or win it with a touchdown. After John Carlson's 10-yard catch, Toby Gerhart carried the ball three straight times for a combined 24 yards to move the ball to the 12-yard line of the Packers. Just like Green Bay, Minnesota stalled on offense and had to settle for a field goal. Overtime continued following Walsh's 35-yarder with 3:49 to go.
After each team went three-and-out, the Packers took over at their own 10 with 1:59 remaining. A trio of penalties on Green Bay killed the drive.
Just one second was left on the clock following Tim Masthay's 39-yard punt. Cordarrelle Patterson caught a 21-yard pass as time expired.
Flynn replaced Scott Tolzien early in the third quarter and completed 21-of-36 passes for 218 yards and a touchdown for the Packers (5-5-1), who had lost three in a row. Tolzien completed 7-of-17 passes for 98 yards and added a 6- yard rushing touchdown before being benched.
"We were looking for a spark," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said of his decision to replace Tolzien with Flynn. "We had a history with Matt. He went out there and played football."
Eddie Lacy carried the ball 25 times for 110 yards and a touchdown for Green Bay. He also caught six passes for 48 yards.
Christian Ponder connected on 21-of-30 passes for 233 yards and a touchdown for the Vikings (2-8-1), who were coming off a 41-20 loss at Seattle last week.
"We let it get out of our hands," Ponder said. "It's unfortunate we're not walking away with our third victory."
Adrian Peterson carried the ball 32 times for 146 yards and a score.
The Vikings held a 23-7 lead following Walsh's 29-yard field goal with 14:22 left in the fourth quarter.
The Packers' comeback started with an 80-yard drive that included a 35-yard defensive pass interference penalty. On the eighth play of the series, Lacy found the end zone from three yards out. The two-point conversion failed.
Green Bay put together a 12-play, 76-yard drive on its next possession. Lacy's 17-yard run and Boykin's 10-yard catch moved the ball into Minnesota territory. Instead of kicking a field goal on 4th-and-1 from the 27-yard line, the Packers went for it. Lacy pushed his way forward for four yards. He then took a screen pass for 13 yards down to the 10-yard line and Boykin caught a 6-yard TD catch to cut the gap to 23-20 with 3:30 remaining.
After the Vikings went three-and-out, Green Bay started from its own 31 with 2:27 left. The home team faced a 4th-and-6 from the Minnesota 40 this time around. Jones caught a 28-yard pass for a fresh set of downs, but the Packers settled for Crosby's 27-yard field goal with 46 seconds left.
The game went to overtime after the Vikings failed to do much on offense.
The Packers put together an 11-play, 87-yard drive on their second possession of the contest. John Kuhn moved the chains with a 20-yard catch on 3rd-and-9. Nelson converted the next third down with a 34-yard catch. Tolzien capped the series with a 6-yard TD run that included a spin move.
Patterson returned the ball 57 yards on the ensuing kickoff. Rhett Ellison added a 14-yard catch to move the ball to the Green Bay 21-yard line. The Vikings, however, had to settle for a 36-yard Walsh field goal.
Green Bay failed to take advantage of a Peterson fumble in the early stages of the second quarter. Andy Mulumba recovered the ball for the Packers near midfield, but a three-and-out followed.
Minnesota started from its own 2-yard line following a 48-yard punt. Peterson's 22-yard run and Jerome Simpson's 31-yard catch helped set up Walsh's 47-yard field goal with 4:24 left in the half.
After forcing the Packers to punt, the Vikings scored their first touchdown of the game. Simpson's 23-yard catch plus a personal foul penalty moved the ball to the Green Bay 27-yard line. Chase Ford added a 20-yard catch before Peterson scored from one yard out for a 13-7 lead.
Things continued to go Minnesota's way early in the third stanza. On their second possession, the Vikings got catches of 15 and 21 yards from Carlson and Greg Jennings. On 2nd-and-4 from the Green Bay 12-yard line, Ponder hooked up with Ellison for a touchdown. Ellison's first career TD catch made it a 20-7 contest.
Flynn took over at quarterback on the ensuing Green Bay possession. The Packers moved the ball into Minnesota territory before punting.
The Vikings bridged the third and fourth frames with a 12-play, 85-yard drive. Walsh's 29-yard field goal made it 23-7 with 14:22 to play.