Loss to Steelers leaves Packers needing Bears loss

Posted by Vic Ketchman, packers.com editor on December 22, 2013 – 6:52 pm

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GREEN BAY–The Packers’ fate is in the hands of the Philadelphia Eagles, following a 38-31 loss to the Steelers at Lambeau Field on Sunday. The Bears can claim the NFC North title with a win tonight in Philadelphia. A Bears loss would set up a Packers at Bears game next week for the division title.

After Mason Crosby cut the Steelers’ lead to 31-24 with a 22-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter, the Packers forced a three-and-out and took possession at their 42-yard line.

Matt Flynn hit Jordy Nelson for 31 yards to the Steelers 16-yard line. James Starks ran for 6 yards and then burst up the middle to the 1-yard line. From there, John Kuhn scored on the next play to tie the game with 7:14 to play.

Ben Roethlisberger eluded the rush and threw to Antonio Brown for 28 yards. The Steelers faced a critical third-and-6 and Roethlisberger’s pass to Heath Miller was shy of a first down, leaving a fourth-and-1.

Following a time out, Coach Mike Tomlin elected to go for the first down. Roethlisberger threw for a first down at the Green Bay 46-yard line.

The Steelers faced a critical third-and-6 again and Roethlisberger threw incomplete for Le’Veon Bell. The Steelers elected to punt and the punt was dead at the Packers 8-yard line with 3:00 to play in regulation.

Flynn was sacked on first down. He would face a third-and-8 and Flynn would fumble at the end of a run short of the first down. The Steelers recovered the fumble at the Packers 17. Troy Polamalu forced the fumble. Review upheld the ruling of fumble.

With 1:51 to play, the Steelers began jockeying for a potential game-winning field goal attempt.

On third-and-8, Roethlisberger threw to Bell at the 10-yard line. Scott Suisham came on for a 28-yard field goal attempt but the Packers’ Nick Perry jumped offside and the Steelers had a first down.

Bell carried to the 1-yard line and the Packers used their final time out. Bell scored standing up on the next play and the Steelers led, 38-31, with 1:25 to play.

Micah Hyde followed with a 70-yard kickoff return and the Packers were in business.

Flynn threw to Nelson for 8 yards to the Steelers 23. A pass to Andrew Quarless gained 19 and the Packers were first and goal.

Starks carried to the 2-yard line. Following a procedure penalty on Don Barclay and a 10-second runoff, Flynn threw incomplete on the final play of the game.


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