Packers ride Rodgers to tough win over Eagles
Aaron Rodgers battled through a hamstring injury to lead the Green Bay Packers to a 27-13 win over the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFL on Monday.
The Packers entered the third quarter with a 17-13 advantage and extended their lead on a one-yard dive by fullback Aaron Ripkowski.
It was the first rushing touchdown by a Packers running back this season.
Rodgers, who has Green Bay's other three rushing touchdowns, had 26 of Green Bay's 74 rushing yards on Monday.
The Packers now have a 29-game winning streak when entering the fourth quarter with the lead and the Eagles (5-6) have lost 18 straight games when trailing after three quarters.
The result saw the Packers improve to 5-6.
AR TO DA
The best throw of Monday's game was a ridiculous 20-yard pass from Rodgers to Davante Adams. Rodgers somehow got the ball through a tight window and Adams hauled it in before Eagles cornerback Nolan Carroll could turn to find the ball.
It was the second touchdown pass to Adams, who finished Monday's game with five catches for 113 yards and the two touchdowns.
"Me and [Rodgers] built up that chemistry and I knew he was going to be counting on me to make some plays," Adams told ESPN. "He put me in a pretty good position to make some."
The Packers defense lost linebacker Clay Matthews early with a left shoulder injury, but he did return. The Packers were already playing without inside linebackers Jake Ryan (ankle) and Blake Martinez (knee), but the defense actually held their own against the Eagles.
Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz was 24 of 36 for 254 yards without a passing touchdown. He was picked by HaHa Clinton-Dix and sacked four times, one by Matthews, as the desperate Packers blitzed Wentz heavily.
If the Packers (5-6) can actually follow through on Rodgers' optimistic prediction of winning every game to make the playoffs, it will be because of him. The Packers defense has struggled while being decimated with injuries. The Packers cannot run the ball, but they still entered the game 11th in the NFL in scoring at 25 points per game. And that is all on Rodgers.
After throwing for 313 yards and two touchdowns on Monday, he has 3,074 passing yards with 27 touchdowns and just seven interceptions this season. His 27 touchdowns are second only to the 30 thrown by New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees.
"I'm proud of those guys," Rodgers said of the defense. "They've been taking it on the chin the last couple of weeks, but they had a lot of faith in the plan this week and they stuck together. That's what our team is going to do the rest of the season."
Should the Packers actually win out, they could win the NFC North. The Packers have winnable home games against the Houston Texans (6-5) and Seattle Seahawks (7-3-1), who were held to five points by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and have not scored a touchdown in three games this season. The Packers, who are 2-1 inside the NFC North, will close the season against each division opponent. They play at Chicago (2-9) before the home finale against the Minnesota Vikings (6-5). The regular-season finale at division-leading Detroit (7-4) could be for the NFC North title.
If Rodgers can will the Packers to a playoff berth, he may not only save the job of head coach Mike McCarthy, but he could wind up with his third league MVP award.