The Greenbay Packers are moving on! Behind Aaron Rodgers and Davante Adams, the Pack are 60 minutes from playing in February. The Seahawks gave the Packers a late scare, but the Packers wouldn’t fold. After taking an early 21-3 lead the Packers looked like they would easily walk away victorious. However, Russell Wilson started to claw his team back and brought them to within five. The Packers gave the ball back to Seattle with under five minutes left. The defense would hold, and a pair of clutch plays would punch the packers ticket to Santa Clara. The Packers won the game 28-23 and are sitting at 14-3 on the season heading into the NFC Championship Game.
A record setting night is exactly what Aaron Rodgers and the Packers both needed from their star wide receiver. All night Seattle didn’t seem to have any answers to Davante Adams. Eight grabs for 160 yards set the record for most receiving yards by a Packers receiver in franchise history. Adams also came up with a 32 yard grab on 3rd and eight to extend the Packers drive and eventually lead to kneel downs.
If Rodgers performance is in anyway indicative of what will happen in Santa Clara the 49ers should be on notice. Rodgers looked sharp and accurate all game. He was getting the ball out quick, and often to one of the leagues best receivers. Aaron Rodgers threw for 243 yards and a pair of touchdowns, while posting a passer rating on 113.7. Rodgers also rushed for 14 yards, most of which came on a scramble on third and nine. He was without wide receiver Allen Lazard for a majority of the game as well. Ultimately, Rodgers put the game in his hands and came up clutch twice in the fourth.
The Packers got production from their stars last night in a huge way. It felt like every move in the off season was made this specific game. Za’darius Smith had two sacks. Preston Smith had two of his own. Kenny Clark tallied one sack. Overall, the three together had 25 pressures and five sacks, keeping Wilson in check. The secondary also played well. Adrian Amos and Darnell Savage helped eliminate one of the staples of the Seattle offense. Seattle through the year has thrived off deep play action passes and were unable to connect for game changing plays on Sunday. Jaire Alexander, Kevin King, and Tramon Williams also held their own and tackled exceptionally well against a team that can burn teams with yards after the catch. The defense as a whole made Seattle one dimensional and forced the run game to be through Wilson.
The Biggest Plays
The game had three big plays that ultimately sent the Seahawks home for the off season. The first was when the Seahawks had the ball trailing by five with under 5 minutes remaining. On third and five when the Packers needed the biggest stop of the season, Preston Smith came across and sacked Russel Wilson. This gave the packers the ball back to run down the clock. The second play came on third and eight with 2:12 left in the game. Rodgers delivered in classic fashion. Him and Adams connected on a beautiful throw over the shoulder for 32 yards. This gave the Packers good field position and control of the clock for at least three more downs. The next and perhaps the biggest play was the one that lead to victory formation. On third and nine Rodgers finds Jimmy Graham underneath for a first down to seal the deal.
A lot was said about whether Graham was short of the first, but there were views that showed him across. Nonetheless, the Packers are moving on, and hope to advance even further. After a terrible outing against San Francisco in the regular season, Rodgers said the Pack would be ready next time they faced the 49ers. Well, the “next time” has been set in stone. The Packers will play for a Super Bowl berth next Sunday, and should be ready.
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