NFC Wild Card Game – Green Bay Packers vs Philadelphia Eagles

Green Bay Packers (10-6) at Philadelphia Eagles (10-6)

This game is a rematch of week 1 of the regular season in which the Packers won on the road 27-20.  The Eagles received the kick-off and started their offense on the 14 yard line.  On the very first play from scrimmage, Desmond Bishop sacks Michael Vick in an attempt to Green Bay Packers running backset the tone for the game.  Philadelphia goes three and out, but on their punt, Brandon Underwood unintentionally touches ball on the ground with his foot, and the Eagles fall on it.  Green Bay make a huge mistake turning the ball over to the Eagles on the Packers 41.  Fortunately for the Packers the Eagles drive ended with a missed 41 yard field.  Later in the quarter, an offsides by the Eagles kept a Packers 11 play, 68 yard drive alive, resulting in a TD.  Rookie James Starks, who only rushed for 101 yards all season accounted for 45 yards, and at the end of first quarter, the Packers led 7-0.

The Eagles first drive of the second quarter resulted in another punt after Clay Matthews sacked Michael Vick on Green Bay Packers quarterbackthird down for a loss of 12.  Aaron Rodgers keyed the Packers next 12 play, 57 yard drive going 5-5 for 36 yards and his second TD pass.  The drive of  7 minutes gave the Packers a 14-0 lead.  When the Eagles got the ball back, Michael Vick threw a 44 yard completion to Jeremy Maclin on the very first play from scrimmage.  The 61 yard drive continued for 8 plays and ended on the Green Bay 13.  This time David Akers was successful, kicking a 29 yard field goal and putting the Eagles on the board trailing 14-3.  With 37 seconds remaining in the half, Rodgers airs out a 35 yard pass to an open James Jones who got past his defender Asante Samuel, but the pass was dropped.  This could have been another Green Bay TD and a huge blow to the Eagles, but instead the Packers run the remaining time off the clock and end the half leading 14-3.

Green Bay received the kick-off to start the second half, and on their first possession, Aaron Rodgers was sacked by Darrell Tapp, fumbles, and the ball is recovered by the Eagles Juqua Parker at the Green Bay 24.  On their second play, Michael Vick capitalizes on the Philadelphia Eagles receiverturnover with a 24 yard TD pass to Jason Avant.  The Eagles get right back in the game with just over a minute gone in the second half, as they cut the lead to 14-10.  Rodgers and the Packers come right back with a long TD drive of 11 plays and 80 yds, that takes up 6:17 on the clock.  Rodgers (4-6, 58 yards, TD) and James Starks (5 carries for 32 yds) provide a great one-two-punch on the drive increasing the Packers lead to 21-10.  The Eagles next drive sputters, as the Packers continue to blitz Vick causing him to rush his throws.  The Eagles are only 2-8 on third down conversions, but their punt pins the Packers back on their own 2 yard line.  The Packers go three and out for the first time in the game (7-10 on third down conversion), and the Eagles begin another drive as the third quarter ends.

Clay Matthews stops the Eagles 8 play, 38 yard drive by stuffing LeSean McCoy on third and 1 at the Green Bay 16.  The Eagles send in the field goal unit for a 34 yard chip shot to get within eight points, but David Akers missed wide right for the second time in the game.  As Green Bay tries to run time off the clock, the Eagles defense steps up and forces a punt.  DeSean Jackson makes his first catch of the game Philadelphia Eagles quarterbackon the Eagles first play of this drive, and it’s good for 19 yards.  The Eagles continue to go on a 13 play, 75 yard scoring drive.  Michael Vick goes 5-8 for 68 yards and caps off the drive with a 1 yard TD run on fourth down.  The Eagles successfully execute a 2-point conversion to get within three points of the Packers, but a penalty nullifies the play, and the Eagles are unsuccessful on their second attempt.  With 4:02 remaining in the game, the Packers hold on to a narrow lead 21-16.  On third and ten of the very next possession, Aaron Rodgers gets sacked by rookie Keenan Clayton, and the Packers are forced to punt.  With 1:45 left and no time outs remaining, the Eagles get the ball back on their own 34 yard line.  First play, Michael Vick completes a pass to DeSean Jackson, and if it wasn’t for Desmond Bishop stretching out with his right arm to trip Jackson, there would have been a new team leading the game.  Instead, the play went for only 28 yards.  On first and ten from the Green Bay 27, Vick pump fakes and throws to the left corner of the endzone for Riley Cooper, who previously just caught an 11 yard pass on third and ten to keep the drive alive.  The ball hung in the air and ended up a little short.  Tramon Williams (6 INT regular season), fronting Cooper, makes a leaping interception to end the hopes of the Philadelphia Eagles.  With 33 seconds left, the Packers just had to down the ball once to end the game, and they win on the road against the Eagles for the second time of the year.  Final score Packers 21, Eagles 16.

Green Bay Packers linebackerAaron Rodgers was 18-27 for 180 yards, 2 TD’s, and a 122.5 rating.  Rodgers spread the wealth as he passed to nine different receivers in the game.  James Starks had 23 carries for 123 yards, which was a franchise record for a rookie.  The Packers did not have many big plays in the game, but they systematically moved up and down the field with their offense, and scored when the opportunities arose.  The Packers defense came up big with 3 sacks, holding Vick to 33 rushing yards, and coming up with the only interception of the game.  The matchup between the Packers defense (2nd in allowing only 15 points per game), and the Eagles offense (3rd in averaging 27.2 points per game) was won by the defense.

Philadelphia Eagles kickerMichael Vick was 20-36 with 292 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, and a 79.9 rating.  DeSean Jackson led the league with 22.5 yards per catch, but his injury in the first quarter held him to only 2 receptions for 47 yards during the game.  Jason Avant tried to carry the load with 7 receptions for 93 yards and a TD.  The Eagles defense was worst in the NFL during the season, allowing 33 Red Zone TD’s out of 43 attempts, and was a huge factor in the game.  They allowed the Packers to go three for three inside the Red Zone which accounted for all 21 Green Bay points.  Perhaps the biggest factor of the game was the two missed field goals by David Akers.  Akers was 32-38 (84.2%) on the season, and his 34 yard field goal miss was his shortest all year.  With only a 5 point margin of victory, If Akers would have made both field goals (34 & 41 yard), we all would be singing a different tune.

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~ by Troy Erickson Realtor on January 10, 2011.

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