Aaron Rodgers found Randall Cobb for a 53-yard touchdown pass on just the third play of the second half, and a 27-7 Panthers halftime lead had been cut to 13 points.
The Packers defense followed by forcing a three-and-out, and spirits along the Packers sideline began to rise. Was a rally in the making?
Rodgers completed a 21-yard pass to begin the Packers’ next possession, and out of a no-huddle offense the Packers were on the move … until a sack and an incomplete pass forced a Tim Masthay punt.
The Panthers took possession at their 14-yard line. Two runs by Jonathan Stewart gained a first down. A 24-yard pass from Cam Newton To Greg Olsen moved the ball to the Packers 34.
Carolina faced a third-and-8 and converted on a draw play to Stewart; first down at the 23. Newton then threw to Corey Brown for 11 to the 12.
Newton called his own number on a 7-yard run to the 5. On second down, rookie linebacker Jake Ryan ran down Stewart at the 4, leaving third-and-2. Newton threw wildly and the Panthers settled for a field goal that capped nearly a seven-minute drive, 30-14, with 4:48 to play in the third quarter.
The Packers began a drive at their 28-yard line with 2:55 to play in the third quarter. Eventually, the Packers faced third-and-14; Rodgers threw incomplete for Richard Rodgers, and a promising drive ended with a punt.
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