Road warriors: Bucs win 31-26 at Green Bay, reach Super Bowl
Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) holds the championship trophy after winning the NFC championship NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers in Green Bay, Wis., Sunday, Jan. 24, 2021. The man with six NFL titles will become the first quarterback to play a Super Bowl on his team’s home field. No, a host team in the Super Bowl has never happened in 54 previous games. Green Bay hasn’t reached the Super Bowl since its 2010 championship season. Green Bay cut the lead to 28-23 late in the third quarter on Rodgers’ touchdown passes to Robert Tonyan and Davante Adams.
NFC Matchups: Where else to start but Brady and Rodgers?
But Gronk in particular has always been a big-play guy in big games for Brady, and Green Bay doesn't have linebackers who excel in coverage. Green Bay will do some blitzing, though not as much as Buccaneers defensive coordinator Todd Bowles figures to do. Unlike Brady, Rodgers can create outside the pocket, and he's especially dangerous when doing so. Veteran placekicker Mason Crosby is solid, making all 16 field goal attempts, but missed four PATs for Green Bay. Tampa Bay's Ryan Succop, now in his 12th pro season, made 28 of 31 field goal tries but missed five extra points.
Packers outlast Panthers 24-16 for 4th straight victory
Aaron Rodgers threw for a season-low 143 yards but produced a touchdown pass – his 40th of the season – and a touchdown run for the Packers. Green Bay (11-3) won its fourth straight and took a half-game lead over New Orleans (10-3) in the race for the NFC’s best record. Mason Crosby gave the Packers some breathing room with a 51-yard field goal with 3:39 left, but the Panthers wouldn't go away. The strategy didn't work then Green Bay stopped Carolina on its final possession. Green Bay hosts Tennessee in another night game on Dec. 27.
Rodgers-led Packers beat Lions 31-24, clinch NFC North title
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers throws during the first half of an NFL football game against the Detroit Lions, Sunday, Dec. 13, 2020, in Detroit. Rodgers ran for a tiebreaking score in the third quarter and threw three touchdown passes, lifting the Green Bay Packers to a 31-24 win over the the Detroit Lions to clinch the NFC North title. “To have the whole thing come through Green Bay is something we’ve talked about for a long time," Rodgers said. “That would definitely be in our favor with the weather that we have in Green Bay. Green Bay repeated as division champion with its win and Minnesota’s loss to Tampa Bay earlier in the day.
Packers withstand late rally to outlast Eagles 30-16
The only other players with at least 400 touchdown passes are Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, Brett Favre, Dan Marino and Philip Rivers. He has 36 touchdown passes this year and is the first player to throw at least 35 in five separate seasons. Rodgers doesn't have the footballs from his 100th, 200th or 300th touchdown passes. His 400th touchdown pass was a 9-yarder to Adams that capped a 99-yard drive in the third period. Philadelphia’s rally started with Hurts' 32-yard touchdown pass to Greg Ward on fourth-and-18.
Eagles get Jeffery, Sanders back for game against Giants
The NFC East-leading Philadelphia Eagles have gotten healthier on offense in time for another division game. Wide receiver Alshon Jeffery is back in Philadelphia’s lineup against the New York Giants, his first action since foot surgery last year. Running back Miles Sanders, the Eagles' leading rusher, is also back after missing three games with a knee injury. Okung will miss his fifth game this season because of injury, so Dennis Daley starts, protecting Teddy Bridgewater’s blindside. The Buccaneers are playing without left guard Ali Marpet, who will miss his second consecutive game with a concussion.
Pandemic limiting what NFL players can do on their off weeks
The Packers (4-0) and Detroit Lions (1-3) don’t play this week and therefore are the first NFL teams to get a taste of how different off weeks will be amid a pandemic. “We have new protocols in place that are meant to keep everybody safe and healthy,” Lions coach Matt Patricia said. The NFL sent out a reminder Friday that the league’s agreement with the NFL Players Association in August means players who miss tests can be punished with a $50,000 fine. “You’ve got to look no further than Tennessee.”The protocols are impacting some players more than others. While the protocols have changed those plans, it has created opportunities for those players who already have their family members with them.
Rodgers, Tonyan lead Packers to 30-16 victory over Falcons
Tonyan caught three of Aaron Rodgers’ four touchdown passes, Za'Darius Smith recorded three sacks and the Packers remained unbeaten with a 30-16 victory over the winless Atlanta Falcons on Monday night. “I just had to continue to do what I've been doing, just keep playing well and stick to the game plan,” Tonyan said. Green Bay star receiver Davante Adams sat out a second straight game with a hamstring injury and Allen Lazard is on injured reserve with a core problem. Tonyan has scored in three straight games and now has five touchdown catches to match Tampa Bay's Mike Evans for the NFL lead. Defensive tackle Kenny Clark (groin) missed a third straight game.
Rodgers, Packers unbeaten with 37-30 victory over Saints
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) drops back to pass under pressure from New Orleans Saints defensive lineman Malcom Roach in the first half of an NFL football game in New Orleans, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)NEW ORLEANS – Aaron Rodgers passed for 283 yards and three touchdowns, and the Green Bay Packers remained unbeaten with a 37-30 victory over the New Orleans Saints on Sunday night. With Packers top receiver Davante Adams unable to play because of a hamstring injury, Rodgers nonetheless found ways to attack New Orleans (1-2) with a variety of passes, short and long. Drew obviously knows how to deal” the ball, Rodgers said, crediting the scheme designed and called by second-year head coach Matt Lafleur. Emmanuel Sanders caught a 10-yard scoring pass at the end of the first half that gave the Saints a 17-13 lead.
Jones' big day helps Packers beat Lions 42-21 in home opener
Jones rushed for a career-high 168 yards and scored three touchdowns, including a 75-yard breakaway, as the Green Bay Packers rallied from an early 11-point deficit to beat the Detroit Lions 42-21 on Sunday. After his first touchdown of the day, a 7-yard reception from Aaron Rodgers, Jones did a different kind of Lambeau Leap. Rodgers was 18 of 30 for 240 yards with touchdown passes to Jones and Robert Tonyan. Green Bay took the lead for good 17-14 on Rodgers’ 11-yard pass to Tonyan with 14 seconds left in the second quarter. Packers receiver Davante Adams (hamstring), center Corey Linsley (hand) and running back/receiver Tyler Ervin (concussion) left in the second half.