GREEN BAY–The Packers’ season ended, 23-20, when 49ers kicker Phil Dawson booted a 33-yard field goal as time expired at Lambeau Field on Sunday.
The Packers took a 17-13 lead with 12:06 to play when John Kuhn plunged a yard for a touchdown that capped a 12-play, 80-yard drive, the big play of which was a 26-yard completion from Aaron Rodgers to Randall Cobb. Rodgers appeared as though he would be sacked but pulled out of the defense’s grasp.
Colin Kaepernick immediately retaliated with a 23-yard run on a critical third-and-4 play. On the next play, Davon House was flagged for holding and the 49ers had a first down at the Packers 28.
With the temperature tumbling toward zero, the action got hotter. On the next play, Kaepernick hit tight end Vernon Davis in stride for a go-ahead touchdown with 10:31 to play. Davis split A.J. Hawk and Morgan Burnett to make the catch.
Aaron Rodgers got the Packers moving with a pass to Jordy Nelson that gained a first down near midfield. Ahead was a big third-and-5 play near 8:30 to play; Rodgers flipped the ball to Kuhn for 8 yards and a first down in 49ers territory.
Eddie Lacy gained eight to the 35; he was nearing 100 yards rushing. The big play was to follow, a pass to Cobb that gained 25 yards to the 49ers 9-yard line.
Ultimately, the Packers would face third-and-goal. Rodgers scrambled for a few yards, leaving Mason Crosby to kick a 24-yard field goal that tied the game, 20-20, with 5:06 to play in regulation.
From his 20, Kaepernick pitched a pass to Michael Crabtree that gained a first down. Two plays later, Kaepernick was nearly intercepted by Micah Hyde. The 49ers were facing third-and-10 and Kaepernick fired a dart to Crabtree for 17 yards and a first down near midfield.
Kaepernick found Frank Gore for 11, as the clock ticked toward the 2-minute warning. The 49ers would have a fresh set of downs from the Packers 40.
The big play of the game was a third-and-8 from the Packers 38, the edge of field goal range for Phil Dawson. Kaepernick did it with his legs again, scrambling for 11 yards and a first down at the Packers 27 with 1:07 to play.
Gore gained 5 to the 22. The Packers called time out; they only had one left.
The 49ers appeared to be playing for a field goal attempt. Gore gained 2 to the 20 and the Packers spent their final time out.
Gore gained 3 and a first down at the 17. The game was in the “hands” of Dawson’s right leg.
Dawson walked onto the field for an attempt to win the game with a walk-off, 33-yard field goal. The 49ers called time out with three seconds to play. Dawson’s kick just sneaked inside the right upright and the 49ers were 23-20 winners and would next play in Carolina.
Posted in Packers.com Blog