Packers 44

(5-2, 2-2 away)

Vikings 31

(1-6, 1-3 home)

Coverage: NBC

8:30 PM ET, October 27, 2013

Mall of America Field, Minneapolis, MN 

1 2 3 4 T
GB 7 17 7 1344
MIN 7 10 0 1431

Top Performers

Passing: A. Rodgers (GB) - 285 YDS, 2 TD

Rushing: E. Lacy (GB) - 29 CAR, 94 YDS, 1 TD

Receiving: J. Nelson (GB) - 7 REC, 123 YDS, 2 TD

Aaron Rodgers sharp as Packers churn out victory over Vikings

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- Aaron Rodgers has the Green Bay Packers rolling, even without three of his best receivers.

There's a powerful running game on his side now, as if Rodgers needed any more help.

Ignoring the injuries around him, Rodgers picked apart what's left of the Minnesota Vikings' depleted defense by throwing two first-half touchdown passes to Jordy Nelson and guiding the Packers to a 44-31 victory Sunday night.

"I think this is really shaping up to be one of Aaron's best years," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. "Aaron's had a lot of challenges Monday through Saturday that don't show up on the stat sheet, just trying to get on the same page with younger players and trusting the game plan."

Missing Randall Cobb, James Jones and Jermichael Finley, Rodgers finished 24 of 29 for 285 yards, helping the Packers (5-2) stay in first place in the NFC North.

"We expect greatness out of our guys," Rodgers said.

Christian Ponder's encore went poorly for the Vikings (1-6), who sent out a different starting quarterback for the third straight week. Adrian Peterson gained a quiet 60 yards on 13 carries, Greg Jennings had just one catch against his old team and the Vikings' offense counted only three plays in the third quarter as the Packers pulled away in their final game at the Metrodome, now known as Mall of America Field.

Ponder didn't turn the ball over, but he was again out of sorts under pressure in the pocket. He finished 14 of 21 for 145 yards against a defense missing three starting linebackers to injury and added a late touchdown run. Coach Leslie Frazier said he hadn't decided whether Ponder would keep the job for another game.

The Vikings beat the Packers 37-34 last December to make the playoffs. But they needed 199 yards rushing from Peterson and the best game of Ponder's career to do it, because Rodgers has rarely found resistance from this defense in purple. In his last eight games against the Vikings, he has 22 touchdown passes and only three interceptions while completing roughly three-quarters of his passes. The Packers have won seven of those.

"I wasn't going to let this team beat us," Rodgers said, adding: "A lot was on my shoulders."

Micah Hyde had a punt return for a touchdown for the Packers, who never punted and held the ball for more than two-thirds of the game to counteract Cordarrelle Patterson's opening 109-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. The Packers have won 15 of their last 16 games against NFC North teams.

"We've got a great team, very well-coached," Rodgers said. "Guys are ready to play. It was loud in here. It was a tough environment, but guys stepped up."

The Packers scored on their first two possessions, running a total of 31 plays for 160 yards that drained 15 minutes and 48 seconds off the clock. Eddie Lacy finished with 94 yards and a touchdown and James Starks ran for 57 yards and a score.

"Everybody wants a 1,500-yard rusher. I've always wanted an 1,100-yard rusher, because I plan on being in the playoffs, so I want him running the same way in January and February as he is in September and October," McCarthy said.

The way Lacy has been pounding the ball, as the leading NFL rookie rusher, Rodgers hasn't had to come up with as many clutch throws with his top targets missing. Lacy and Starks took turns trampling an exhausted Vikings defense, with each guy contributing a touchdown on the ground and the Packers reaching a season-high 182 yards rushing.

"When the heck is the last time the Green Bay Packers rushed for 200 yards on somebody?" defensive end Jared Allen said, slightly exaggerating the total. "If that's not a punch in the gut and a wake-up to people, something needs to be."

The Packers converted 13 third downs and two fourth downs. The only time they had the ball and didn't score was the kneel-down at the end of the game.

"These are the guys we have," Frazier said. "So we've got to figure out schematically what we can do with the guys that we have to be better."

Game notes

The two longest plays in NFL history have happened at the Metrodome: Patterson's plus a 109-yard return by Antonio Cromartie of a missed field goal for San Diego in 2007. ... The Vikings finished 16-15 here against the Packers. ... Rodgers and Jennings embraced on the field after the game. Jennings made some critical comments about the quarterback in the offseason but Rodgers said Sunday night: "We had a lot of good memories together."

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

1st Downs2615
Passing 1st downs
Rushing 1st downs
1st downs from penalties
3rd down efficiency
4th down efficiency
Total Plays7343
Total Yards464243
Yards per play6.45.7
Total Drives910
Yards per pass
Interceptions thrown
Sacks-Yards Lost
Rushing Attempts
Yards per rush
Red Zone (Made-Att)2-43-4
Fumbles lost
Interceptions thrown
Defensive / Special Teams TDs11

Passing Leaders


Rushing Leaders


Receiving Leaders


Scoring Summary

minTD15:00Cordarrelle Patterson 109 Yard Kickoff Return (Blair Walsh Kick is Good)
Drive info: 0 plays, 0 yds, 0:13
gbTD7:28Jordy Nelson 11 Yard Pass From Aaron Rodgers (Mason Crosby Kick is Good)
Drive info: 14 plays, 90 yds, 7:24
gbFG10:33Mason Crosby 30 Yard Field Goal is Good
Drive info: 17 plays, 70 yds, 8:24
minFG5:12Blair Walsh 36 Yard Field Goal is Good
Drive info: 11 plays, 62 yds, 5:20
gbTD3:49Jordy Nelson 76 Yard Pass From Aaron Rodgers (Mason Crosby Kick is Good)
Drive info: 3 plays, 80 yds, 1:31
gbTD1:49Micah Hyde 93 Yard Punt Return (Mason Crosby Kick is Good)
Drive info: 1 plays, 93 yds, 0:00
minTD0:10Adrian Peterson 8 Yard Run (Blair Walsh Kick is Good)
Drive info: 8 plays, 77 yds, 1:26
gbTD6:53Eddie Lacy 1 Yard Run (Mason Crosby Kick is Good)
Drive info: 15 plays, 80 yds, 8:10
gbTD14:23James Starks 25 Yard Run (Mason Crosby Kick is Good)
Drive info: 9 plays, 74 yds, 5:32
gbFG6:12Mason Crosby 20 Yard Field Goal is Good
Drive info: 10 plays, 53 yds, 6:36
minTD4:48Toby Gerhart 13 Yard Run (Blair Walsh Kick is Good)
Drive info: 5 plays, 58 yds, 1:28
gbFG2:57Mason Crosby 45 Yard Field Goal is Good
Drive info: 6 plays, 16 yds, 1:49
minTD1:31Christian Ponder 19 Yard Run (Blair Walsh Kick is Good)
Drive info: 5 plays, 73 yds, 1:29

Research Notes

Adrian Peterson has recorded 13 or fewer rushes in 3 straight games, tied for the longest streak in his career; also recorded 13 or fewer rushes in Week 11, 15, and 16 in 2011. ** Please note: In 2011 Week 11, Peterson left the game in the 2nd quarter with an ankle injury and did not play again until Week 15).
Jordy Nelson: 76-yard TD catch. He has four TD catches of 75 or more yards since start of 2010, tied with Julio Jones for most in NFL in that span
Cordarrelle Patterson's 109-yard kickoff return TD is the longest kickoff return TD in NFL history.

ESPN Stats & Information