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Green Bay Packers stumble to 13-7 deficit in first half against Minnesota Vikings

The Green Bay Packers looked like a third-place team in the first half against the Minnesota Vikings.

The Green Bay Packers looked like a third-place team in the first half against the Minnesota Vikings.

The Green Bay Packers entered this game at third place in the NFC North, needing a victory over the Minnesota Vikings to get back into the divisional race.

Through two quarters, they have looked every bit of a third-place team, allowing the Vikings to take a 13-7 lead to the locker room.

On the Vikings’ first possession, it looked like the defense would be in control of this game. They sacked quarterback Christian Ponder on two consecutive plays, forcing Minnesota to punt it away.

Green Bay responded with an offensive drive highlighted by a 34-yard hookup from backup quarterback Scott Tolzien to wide receiver Jordy Nelson.

One of the worst red-zone offenses in the league, it looked like the Packers would be unable to capitalize on the play, as wide receiver James Jones dropped a pass in the end zone.

On the ensuing play, though, protection broke down. Tolzien stepped up to elude the rush and, making a spin move to evade would-be tacklers, stumbled across the goal line for a rushing touchdown.

The special teams promptly proceeded to give up a 57-yard kickoff return to Cordarrelle Patterson. Ponder was ineffective in the pocket, forcing Minnesota to settle for a field goal.

Neither defense was able to contain the run all half, although the offenses seemed incapable of mounting sustained drives.

In the waning moments of the second quarter, the Vikings drove deep into Green Bay territory. The defense made a desperate goal-line stand, only to crumble on third down and allow running back Adrian Peterson to scamper untouched into the end zone.

Standouts

Packers running back Eddie Lacy looked much better than his numbers (13 rushes for 62 yards, 4.8 yards per carry), breaking multiple tackles on several of his runs. He was decisive in the backfield, finding the hole and charging into it without hesitation.

The defense, despite its struggles against the run, came up with four sacks of Christian Ponder. Linebacker Clay Matthews III in particular looked impressive in his first week without a protective device on his hand.

Linebacker A.J. Hawk forced a fumble of Adrian Peterson, although he committed a blatant facemask (yet uncalled) infraction while doing so.

Slipups

The defense was unable to contain Adrian Peterson, giving up 78 yards on 16 carries for an average of 4.9 yards per carry.

Injuries

Running back Johnathan Franklin was knocked out of the game on the first kickoff return with what was described as “concussion-like symptoms.”

What’s next

If Green Bay still has any ambitions of making the playoffs this season, they need to put points on the board in the second half. Minnesota gets the ball to start the third quarter, so a three-and-out would be positive for the Packers’ prospects.

Look for head coach Mike McCarthy to put this game on Eddie Lacy’s shoulders and take the stress off his young quarterback, who has been under pressure all game so far.

1846 comments
LSU4LIFE
LSU4LIFE

Another Seahawk player suspended for PED's, Pete Carroll left USC before the axe fell, now he is in Seattle up to his old tricks.

LKP
LKP

Ok I think I should write a recap so we know about the flukes and true score of this one

LKP
LKP

Lions/Cowboys in the NFC Champ game. Book that

bp.
bp. moderator

I might beat flying towelheads in fantasy this week, and play the role of spoiler.  Despite playing Joqueieuieiu Bell.

.. ..
.. ..

remember the last four seasons when the packers and a combo of one other nfcn team made the playoffs each season. 

5 Time! 5 Time! 5 Time World Champs!
5 Time! 5 Time! 5 Time World Champs! moderator

I think its funny that commentators always say that, "what are the def. players suppose to do when tackling a QB?'

There are PLENTY of examples of clean hits on QBs. Stop acting like the D players get called for a penalty everytime they touch the QB.

Home of the Braves
Home of the Braves moderator

Matt Ryan was hit the same way, no call. Refs have to be consistent. 

LKP
LKP

Can you guys just agree with me the Durham fumble and Calvin pick off his hands was flukey

G & G
G & G moderator

Yo can make one for the Thanksgiving game already

G & G
G & G moderator

Hahhahahahhahahhahahahhahahahahahahahahja

LKP
LKP

@andylet445 Lions 2 out of 3 years when they win the division this year. Packers miss this year

G & G
G & G moderator

Homer is back?

Reginald Hopelessness
Reginald Hopelessness moderator

True score puts the Saints at 11-0. Fluke last second TD in NE and fluke ints off WRs hands against the Jets.

bp.
bp. moderator

@Lions NFC North Champs The Calvin play was not fluky.  That's the kind of thing that happens often in football.  I did not see the fumble.