Packers stuff Lions 24-15, 11-0 for first-time everWisconsin Sports
-- The Green Bay Packers rallied in the second half on Thanksgiving to win at Detroit, 27-15. Coach Mike McCarthy said his younger players stepped up. And he called it an "excellent character win" for the Packers -- who are now 11-and-0 for the first time in the team's 91-year history.
GREEN BAY - The Green Bay Packers rallied in the second half on Thanksgiving to win at Detroit, 27-15. Coach Mike McCarthy said his younger players stepped up. And he called it an "excellent character win" for the Packers -- who are now 11-and-0 for the first time in the team's 91-year history.
The Packers led 7-0 at the break, despite being out-gained 218 yards to 86 -- the fewest yards for Green Bay in a half this season. In the second half, the Pack scored on four-of-five possessions and then survived a late Detroit touchdown to give Green Bay its 17th straight victory. The Lions lost on Thanksgiving for the eighth straight time.
Each team had a player ejected. The Packers lost Pat Lee in the first half when he pushed a player's head backward during a scuffle on a punt return. In the third quarter, Lions' defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh was tossed for pushing the head of Packers' guard Evan Dietrich-Smith to the ground three times, and then kicking Dietrich-Smith in the arm while the Packer was still on the ground. Suh claimed he did nothing wrong, and he was being held down by Dietrich-Smith -- who entered the game after Josh Sitton left with a knee injury. Coach McCarthy did not say if was the same injury Sitton suffered earlier. Also, Green Bay linebackers A.J. Hawk and Desmond Bishop left with calf injuries. Detroit lost starting tailback Kevin Smith with an ankle problem. Defensive backs Louis Delmas and Chris Houston had knee injuries, and Brandon McDonald left in the second half.
Aaron Rodgers threw for 307 yards and two touchdowns, and he won Fox TV's "Galloping Gobbler" award as the game's MVP. Greg Jennings caught five passes for 74 yards and a score. James Jones caught a 65-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter, and he had 94 yards on the day. The Packers only had 53 rushing yards. Ryan Grant had 20, and James Starks -- who hurt a knee and an ankle last Sunday -- ran for 19 yards. Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford threw for 276 yards, a touchdown to Calvin Johnson, and three interceptions which resulted in 17 Green Bay points. Johnson was held to four catches. The Lions fell to 7-4, and they dropped to third place in the NFC North, four games behind the Packers. The Pack's next game will be a week from Sunday against the New York Giants in the Meadowlands.
The Packers got some breathing room in the NFC playoff race last night, after second-place San Francisco lost at Baltimore 16-6. The 49'ers fell to 9-2, and Green Bay now has a two-game lead for the NFC's top seed and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. The Ravens broke a 6-6 tie when Joe Flacco threw an eight-yard scoring pass to Dennis Pitta early in the fourth quarter. It was the game's only touchdown. The Ravens tied a team-record with nine sacks.
Racine County native Tony Romo threw a pair of touchdown passes for the Dallas Cowboys in a 20-19 home win over Miami. Romo, who's from Burlington, overcame two interceptions. Dan Bailey kicked a 28-yard field goal as time expired, as the Cowboys improved to 7-4 took a half-game lead over the Packers' next opponent -- the New York Giants -- in the NFC East.