PACKERS TOP LIONS, 45-41, TO FINISH 15-1
- Green Bay beat Detroit, 45-41, today at Lambeau Field. With their 15th victory, the Packers became just the sixth team in NFL history to finish with a record of 15-1 or better.
- The Packers posted a perfect record (6-0) in their division for the first time since the league went to a divisional format in 1967. The last team to register a perfect record in the NFC North/Central was the 1987 Chicago Bears (7-0).
- Green Bay’s 550 yards gained vs. Detroit today was the third-highest single-game total in franchise history behind only the 628 yards at Philadelphia (Nov. 11, 1962) and the 569 yards at Tampa Bay (Oct. 12, 1980).
- Sunday marked the sixth time this season that the Packers scored at least 42 points in a game. That is the most by an NFL team since the merger, besting the previous mark of five games by the 1971 Dallas Cowboys.
- The Packers set single-season franchise records for regular-season games won (15), total points (560), points per game (35.0), total points at home (321), points per game at home (40.1), touchdowns (64 plus today), net passing yards (4,924), fewest giveaways (14), fewest punts in a 16-game season (55), fewest penalties in a 16-game season (76) and fewest penalty yards in a 16-game season (591).
- Green Bay’s 6,482 total net yards this season rank No. 1 in franchise history, besting the 2004 total of 6,357 yards.
- The Packers’ 560 points on the season ranks No. 2 in NFL single-season annals behind only the 2007 New England Patriots (589). Green Bay led the league in scoring for the first time since 1996.
- With 70 total TDs this season, Green Bay tied the 1984 Miami Dolphins for the second-most TDs in a season in NFL history. The two teams trail only the 2007 New England Patriots (75 TDs).
- The Packers’ turnover differential of plus-24 is tied for the No. 2 mark in franchise history behind only the plus-26 margin in 1943.
- Green Bay’s 31 interceptions this season are tied for the most by the team in a season since 1962 (also 31).
- The Packers have now won 21 straight games against the Lions in the state of Wisconsin (including playoffs). The regular-season winning streak of 20 straight games is the longest home winning streak in the league.
- This was Green Bay’s fifth season sweep of the Lions in the past six seasons.
- Today’s victory was Green Bay’s 13th straight at Lambeau Field and the 19th victory in its last 20 contests at home.
- The 13-game home winning streak is tied for the fourth-longest winning streak at home in franchise history.
- Green Bay posted an 8-0 record at home for the first time since 2002.
- The Packers’ 25 regular-season wins over the past two seasons rank No. 2 in team history over a two-year period behind only the 26 wins from 1996-97.
OTHER POST-GAME NOTES
- Today’s paid attendance was 70,294. It was the 301st consecutive sellout (285 regular season, 16 playoffs) at Lambeau Field.
- QB Matt Flynn set franchise records for the most passing yards (480) and the most passing TDs in a game in franchise history (six).
- Flynn is only the fourth quarterback in NFL history to post 475-plus passing yards and six-plus TDs in the same game, joining Y.A. Tittle (Oct. 28, 1962), Joe Namath (Sept. 24, 1972) and Joe Montana (Oct. 14, 1990). According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Flynn joined Dan Marino and Kurt Warner as the only NFL quarterbacks to throw three-plus TDs in each of their first two career starts (among quarterbacks whose careers started since 1970).
- According to Elias, the Packers became the first team in NFL history to have two different QBs each throw at least five TDs in consecutive weeks. QB Aaron Rodgers threw five TD passes vs. Chicago in Week 16.
- With a 122.5 passer rating this season, Rodgers set the NFL single-season record, topping the previous mark of 121.1 by Colts QB Peyton Manning in 2004. Rodgers is the first Green Bay quarterback to lead the league in passer rating since the system was implemented in 1973.
- Rodgers is the first 4,000-yard passer in league history to throw six or fewer interceptions in that season. The previous record of seven INTs was held by both Rodgers and QB Brett Favre (seven INTs each in 2009). Rodgers is also the first QB in NFL history to register two seasons with 500-plus attempts and seven or fewer INTs (also did so in 2009). The only other quarterbacks in league history to accomplish the feat in a season are Jason Campbell in 2008 and Favre in 2009.
- Rodgers’ average of 9.25 yards per attempt this season ranks No. 4 since the merger (min. 200 attempts) behind only Kurt Warner (9.88 in 2000), Chris Chandler (9.65 in 1998) and Ken Stabler (9.41 in 1976).
- Rodgers set single-season franchise records for TD passes (45), passing yards (4,643), completion percentage (68.3), yards per attempt (9.25), touchdown/interception ratio (7.50), and 300-yard games (eight), and tied Bart Starr (1966) for the team record for interception percentage (1.20).
- Head Coach Mike McCarthy is the first head coach in team history to win six consecutive season finales. As a team, the Packers have won nine straight season finales (2003-11), the longest current streak in the NFL.
- WR Jordy Nelson’s three TDs gave him 15 for the season. That is the most by a Packer since WR Sterling Sharpe had 18 in 1994. Nelson is the third player in franchise history to have 15-plus TD catches in a season (Sharpe, Don Hutson).
- Nelson’s three TDs and 162 receiving yards were single-game career highs, and his nine receptions were a career high for a regular-season game (also had nine catches in Super Bowl XLV vs. Pittsburgh).
- Nelson became just the second player in franchise history to have at least eight receptions, 150 receiving yards and three receiving TDs in a game (Javon Walker, 11-200-3, at Indianapolis, Sept. 26, 2004).
- Among Packers with 60-plus catches in a season, Nelson’s receiving average of 18.6 ranks No. 2 in team history behind only WR James Lofton’s 22.0-yard average on 62 catches in 1984.
- TE Jermichael Finley’s 767 receiving yards this season are the second most by a Green Bay tight end in a season behind only Paul Coffman’s 814 in 1983.
- Finley matched his career high (2009) with 55 receptions on the season. Those two seasons trail only Coffman’s 56-catch season in 1979 in the franchise record books for tight ends.
- Finley’s eight TD catches on the season are the most by a Green Bay tight end since Bubba Franks’ nine in 2001.
- RB Ryan Grant’s 80-yard TD reception was the longest reception by a Green Bay running back since Elijah Pitts’ 80-yard TD reception from QB Bart Starr vs. the Los Angeles Rams on Sept. 25, 1966.
- With 140 points on the season, K Mason Crosby became the second player in team history (Paul Hornung) and only the sixth player in NFL history to record two 140-point seasons in his career (141 points in 2007).
- Crosby’s 649 career points are the most in NFL history by a player in his first five seasons in the league.
- Crosby set a franchise record for the most PATs in a season with 68.
- P Tim Masthay set single-season franchise records for gross punting average (45.6) and net punting average (38.6). Net punting average has been an official stat since 1976.
- WR Randall Cobb’s kickoff return average of 27.7 this season ranks No. 3 in the franchise record book (min. 25 returns) behind only Dave Hampton (28.6 in 1971) and Al Carmichael (28.1 in 1956). Cobb’s 941 kickoff return yards on the season are the most by a rookie in franchise history.
- The Packers outscored their opponents by 201 points this season, the third straight season that Green Bay has outscored its opponents by at least 145 points on the season. The last NFL team to accomplish that feat was the San Francisco 49ers (1991-95).
- Green Bay’s third-down percentage of 48.1 ranks No. 2 in team annals since the merger behind only the 49.1 percent mark in 1995.
GREEN BAY PACKERS HEAD COACH MIKE McCARTHY:
(on Matt Flynn’s performance) “Well, it’s clearly one of the best performances I’ve been a part of, no doubt about it. I can’t say enough about Matt Flynn. The whole world got to see what we see every day. He’s a talented young man, he has full control of the offense and just the way he plays, he’s very even-keeled. He had some bumps in the road, and just stayed the course. I thought those two throws he made in the two-minute drill were special. That’s what you need as a young quarterback to build your success. If you look at his two starts for the Green Bay Packers, the New England game, did a lot of good things, it came down to a two-minute drill and then he went out there today after putting up big numbers and when it counted most, he was right on point. What a great performance by our football team and headed by Matt Flynn.”
(on if it was an easy decision to rest Aaron Rodgers today) “Yeah, it was an easy call. It was more important for Aaron to go through the week to prepare for the Lions because there is the potential to play the Lions in the playoffs. Aaron did that. Actually, we went no-huddle exclusively in the first half and Aaron Rodgers called it over the headset the whole first half because I wanted him mentally into this game; prepared to be able to operate as if he was playing. I was pleased the way the week went leading up to this and what we accomplished here today.”
(on concerns over his defense) “Obviously, there was a lot of production by Detroit today, point production, yards production. Our identity has been taking care of the football, taking the football away and we were able to accomplish that today. The quarterback differential is something that we spend a lot of time on and emphasize. We won that battle today and we’ll go back and just continue to work on things that are necessary. The things that I concern myself with are tackling, assignment, gap integrity and things like that. Clay and Charles not being there, that definitely makes a difference. But it was good for a number of guys getting an opportunity to play. We’ll have more to evaluate as we go into the playoffs.”
(on if this game sends his team into the playoffs with momentum) “It sends us into the playoffs in the right mindset to continue the process. It’s a new season. There’s six teams we’re battling against to get to Indianapolis. We’re really focused on improving as a team. We don’t do everything exactly right. We understand there are things we did today that we haven’t done, so we’ll continue to learn. It’s a very accountable group of men. But the most important thing is in two weeks when we step out onto Lambeau, we play our best football.”
(on the Packers sweeping the division in the regular season) “Very proud. That was our theme during the week. We had a great video last night that I wish I could share with you. It’s humorous. It was well done, just the emphasis on sweeping the division. Every week, teams play for different accomplishments. Ours was clearly to sweep the division. The Lions obviously had something else to play for. But I’m very proud of what we accomplished. Anytime you can stand up here and say, ‘This is the first time you accomplished a goal in the history of the Green Bay Packers,’ that’s strong. That’s very strong. It just speaks volumes about the type of season we had.”
PACKERS QB MATT FLYNN:
(on what this is going to mean for him going forward) “I’m not sure what it’s going to mean for me in the future, but we came out today to win the game. We came out to execute our game plan and that’s what we did. A lot of the credit goes to the o-line. The receivers got open, they made plays and everyone kept fighting. We did what we wanted to accomplish and they did a nice job not hanging their heads. They kept answering them, so I’m very proud of the guys and hopefully this gives us a lot of momentum going forward.”
(on if he could have expected his performance) “I’d like to say yes but definitely not. I think they just read me a couple of the things we did today and, wow, it was incredible. It’s a great feeling and (I’m) just thankful for the opportunity, thankful for all the guys around me believing in me.”
(on if he imagined this type of performance after starting with a 3 and out) “Before the game, after the first drive, after the second drive, (I) definitely never thought that it would be a six-touchdown game. But that’s what it took. You’ve got to give it to Jordy (Nelson) and (Donald) Driver and Jermichael (Finley) – all the guys that made plays. They’re making catches, breaking tackles and just really they have a nose for the end zone. They did a really good job and it’s pretty incredible to sit back and now see what we did in the game, but that’s what was necessary and that’s what it took to win.”
(on if he felt like this was sort of an audition) “That’s a mind game that you have to stay away from leading up to the game and preparing for the game, and I looked at it as just one game. I didn’t look at it as trying to prove anything to anybody or trying to prove myself to the rest of the NFL. I didn’t look at it like that. There’s a lot ahead of this team and a lot of great things ahead of this team this year, so that made it a lot easier to not look ahead and to just – it’s kind of cliché – but take it one week at a time. That was kind of kind of what we had to do and that was my mindset.”
(on if it was as easy as it looked, especially considering the windy weather) “It wasn’t as easy as it looked. They have a good defense and we had a good game plan going into it. We executed in the no huddle in the first half very well. Leading up to the game we kind of knew it was going to be bad weather. We thought the wind might be a little bit stronger than it actually was, so that made it a little bit easier, made it a little bit better. We did a good job of utilizing checkdowns, running backs, hitting short stuff and then they took it from there.”
(on if Aaron Rodgers’ input was more valuable during the week or today) “Both. We talked all week about the no-huddle situations. We mentally put drives together all week leading up to today. We sat down last night for about an hour, talked about what we thought, different plays that we kind of wanted to get done and different things that we wanted to do, Then today he was calling the plays in the no-huddle and really staying into it, and he obviously did a very good job.”
(on if he’s ever had a 6-TD game at any level) “I had four touchdowns in the national championship game (at LSU). That was the most.”
(on if they feel like they have good momentum heading into the playoffs) “Yeah, definitely. We would have felt like we had momentum going into the playoffs before this game, without this game happening. We have a great opportunity in front of us. We have a great team and I think this was just kind of icing on the cake, helping us as we go into the playoffs.”
(on if it’s going to be hard to go back to the bench after this game) “Not at all. We’ve got the best quarterback in the NFL as the starter here so it’s not hard at all. He’s the heart and soul of this team and the leader of this team, so it’s pretty easy to take a back seat and watch him play, and I’m excited to see what he does in the playoffs.”
(on what it means to him to have thrown for more yards in a single game than any player in franchise history) “In the locker room, that’s when I heard about it. It’s humbling. I’m honored to have the opportunity to do it and just think about all the great quarterbacks that have come through here. It’s very humbling and I thank everybody around me and everything. I couldn’t have done it, obviously, by myself, but there’s weapons all around me and the line did a great job. It was just one of those games where it got to a shootout. We just kept matching each other so that’s kind of why you saw the numbers that you did.”
PACKERS CB/S JARRETT BUSH:
(on Matthew Stafford and Detroit’s offense) “He has a lot of good weapons. You have to give credit to Stafford. He gets paid, too. He has a lot of good players with (Calvin) Johnson and (Nate) Burleson. Great players and play makers like running back Kevin Smith. You have to give credit. They’re trying to win the game also, trying to get that fifth seed and obviously we executed our game plan. We just made a little more plays than they did. In the end, that’s all it comes down to and we got the W.”
(on his interception) “I think it was an empty set and I knew it was going to be some kind of short gain hot route. I just kind of read it, anticipated, read his route and he threw it up there, and kind of snagged it. Luckily, we were in the red zone, so we took some points off the board. It was huge and huge for our defense so the offense could get the ball back and run some of the clock off.”
(on the importance of this game with reserves playing) “It’s very important because we’re not out there to lose. We’re out there to go play football and we play to win. The coaches harp on us that we play to win the game. We game plan to win, we try to scheme, it’s not our way to just go into a football game like, ‘OK, we’re going to just roll over because we’re in the playoffs already.’ Like I said, that’s not our mentality.”
PACKERS WR JAMES JONES
(on Matt Flynn) “We told you all all week that Matt was a gamer and we had 100-percent confidence in Matt. He just showed the world what Matt Flynn can do and he can do it really well. You can’t say he’s going to throw for six touchdowns, but we knew what he was capable of doing. That’s the type of game it was. He came out there, it was shootout, and we were able to throw the ball and make some plays down the field.”
(on the importance of winning) “You want to go into the playoffs with momentum. Last year we went in with momentum and played well all the way through the Super Bowl, so it’s definitely good to get some momentum going. Now, it’s on to the real season.”
(on the game plan) “We didn’t hold back. It was the same play call and same offense. We put the game in Flynn’s hands and let him run it and see what he could do.”
(on the final scoring drive) “We always feel like we can score. We have 100-percent confidence in our offense and Matt, so we always feel like we can score. We just have to make the plays that are there.”
PACKERS WR JORDY NELSON:
(on being third all-time for most touchdown receptions in a season in franchise history) “It’s been a lot of fun and it’s just making the most of my opportunities. I play with great quarterbacks and I’m just trying to make the most of my opportunities to make plays and help the team win games. Obviously, it’s an honor. We’ve always said, getting up there into the record book in this organization – if it’s wins, if it’s stats, if it’s Super Bowls, whatever – it’s an honor because you know the teams that have been through this stadium and this organization, so it’s an honor to have your name there, but the work’s not done yet.”
(on Matt Flynn’s performance) “It was unbelievable. We’re extremely excited for Matt in this locker room, especially after the way he played last year in New England and didn’t get to come away with the win, and then come out here and reset the records that he broke today, and get the win. It’s good timing for that man.”
(on carrying the momentum into the playoffs) “I think so. Guys are excited and playing well. Everyone had to go out and perform today. Obviously, we had guys playing who don’t normally play, but we’ve always said you have to step up and make plays. It’s great to see the different guys out there making plays and just keeping the momentum and everything going into the playoffs. We have a nice little break coming up and then we’ll see who we get.”
(on if anything changed today with the conditions and change at quarterback) “Not that I know of. We still took some shots as you guys saw. Matt has a full arsenal. We can play the whole offense. We still did our no-huddle, two tight ends and one tight end. We ran the two-minute drill great twice today. He put on a show. He was all out there. He had everything possible for him to run and he performed.”
PACKERS CB TRAMON WILLIAMS:
(on the high-scoring result) “We kind of expected a game like this. Anytime you get an offensive team like that, they’re going to move the ball and they’re going to score points. It was good our offense came out and scored points, and for Flynn to get some snaps and win a game this time. He played well last time, but won a game this time, so I’m glad to see that.”
(on Flynn’s performance) “It was good to see a guy like that get snaps and gives you confidence if Aaron would go down that we’re still in good hands.”
(on Calvin Johnson) “Game plan just wasn’t the same. He hit some holes and obviously he’s a big guy and hard to break down. He had a good day today.”
(on momentum going into the playoffs) “Obviously, we have this week off and we’re definitely going to try to get better throughout this week. At this point, it doesn’t matter if we have what it takes or not – it’s here. It’s time to play ball.”
(on the boost this gives the team) “I think we were already planning to roll into the playoffs, but a game like this, a battle, is always good going into the playoffs, especially playing a playoff-caliber team. I think we got some good reps out there, some good looks and it’s going to help us out for the playoffs.”
DETROIT LIONS HEAD COACH JIM SCHWARTZ:
(on the loss going into the playoffs) “This certainly was not a throw-away game for us … Maybe it makes us angry. We’ll see.”
(on the performance of the team’s secondary) “They couldn’t have played worse. We covered poorly, we tackled poorly, we played man-to-man poorly, we blitzed poorly, we played zone poorly.”
(on not being able to challenge WR Titus Young’s catch in the end zone) “Every play this year they always rule in favor of a touchdown knowing that it’s going to get reviewed. I don’t have any challenges left. The worst challenge was the first one that I had to challenge, because you only get two and the whole thing with replay is to get it right. Well, we didn’t get it right.”
(on if the team is in better shape than the last time it played New Orleans) “We’ll see, that’s why we play.”
LIONS QB MATTHEW STAFFORD:
(on the loss) “We had a chance to win the game and didn’t win it. It’s tough. We played well in certain areas, but it’s never fun losing, especially with so much at stake. We had a chance to lock up the five seed. We just couldn’t put enough up there to beat them.”
(on looking ahead to the playoffs) “We’re going to use this as motivation. As a team, understanding that we had a chance, didn’t get it done, so we’ve got to go out there and start making it happen. We’ve got to get on a run here. That’s what it’s all about in the playoffs, playing hot, and hopefully we can get that going.”
(on whether or not he expected a high-scoring game) “No I didn’t expect it. We came out in pregame and it was a lot windier than it was all game. It kind of calmed down so it made it a lot easier to throw the ball.”
(on Packers quarterback Matt Flynn) “I thought Flynn played a great game. Their guys were making plays all over the field and scoring points, so hats off to him, he played a great game.”
(on wide receiver Calvin Johnson) “He’s an unbelievable player. He played great for us today. He gutted it out, took some shots and kept playing. He made some big plays for us like he does every week. He played great and I’m happy for him.”
(on his interception on the final drive) “They were dropping eight. All the throws on that last drive were really, ‘oh they almost picked it and we caught it’, that’s the way it’s going to be the whole way down the field when they’ve got so many guys in coverage. We had a chance with a one-on-one route with Calvin (Johnson) and hindsight is 20-20, you want to go back there and maybe give him a chance, but Nate (Burleson) ran a great route. He had some contact. It looked like he was getting jammed up a little bit there in the middle with some guys as I let it go and the corner fell off of the post we had on the outside and made a good play and caught it.”
(on potentially facing New Orleans in the playoffs) “You’ve got to go in there this time and have a good plan if that’s who we’re playing. We’ve got to go in there and execute on offense. They’re playing great on offense. Our defense is going to have their hands full and their defense is obviously very capable so we’re going to have to have a good plan on offense.”
(on how the team is different now than it was four weeks ago) “I think we’re playing a little bit more sound football. We’re not shooting ourselves in the foot as much as we were then. We had some penalties today that cost us. We’ve got to iron that out, keep making that a big issue and a big point moving forward in the playoffs.”
LIONS K JASON HANSON:
(on the loss) “We had them, but they pulled it out. You have to make something happen there at the end. We have a crazy streak of losses against them. This is a tough place to play and if you have turnovers and have other things happen, then it is tough to overcome at Lambeau.”
(on heading into the playoffs) “We had a chance to get a little better seeding, but it is our fault. You are going to have to play the good teams sooner or later. This was a game that we wanted to win, and I keep saying that we won it and we lost it today. We played really good and really bad all in the same game.”
LIONS CB ALPHONSO SMITH:
(on his interception of Matt Flynn) “It was a play that Coach Schwartz had gotten us ready for the entire week. I recognized the formation and it was one of the things that we emphasized all week to not let them get inside of us. It was one of the plays that I made a good play on today.”
(on Matt Flynn) “I looked up at the scoreboard and saw all those passing yards. What I can say about us is that obviously we didn’t play our best game. We gave up a lot of plays that we practice and that is the most disappointing part about today’s performance. I didn’t execute things as well as I could have today. We didn’t execute the game plan that Coach Schwartz had planned for us.”
(on the loss) “We can’t cry over spilled milk right now. The fact of the matter is that we lost the game. We battled, but we had a tough game. We had a chance to win it defensively. The offense gave us a chance to win it towards the end, but we didn’t execute it. Fortunately we have a game next Sunday and hopefully we will execute better.”
LIONS WR TITUS YOUNG:
(on if he thought the game would be such a shootout) “I thought that we were going to score a lot of points. Their backup quarterback did a good job of capitalizing on opportunities. I don’t ever expect anything but a competitive football game, so whichever way the other team brings that competition we have to be prepared for it.”
(on his two receiving touchdowns) “Matthew (Stafford) did a great job of finding me when I had one-on-one coverage. I am always telling him to just give me the ball if I have one on one. He did that, and I rewarded him with two touchdowns.”
(on Matthew Stafford’s season) “He had a great season. It is his first season being healthy all year. God has really blessed him with a great arm, great leadership and a great mind. Every time you are in the game with him you feel like you are going to be involved and you have a shot at making a play. I am very thankful to be part of an offense that he is coordinating.”
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