Packers Beat Seahawks in NFC Championship Rematch
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — This time, the Green Bay Packers punched back in the second half against the Seattle Seahawks.
Aaron Rodgers threw for two touchdowns and the Green Bay Packers outlasted the Seattle Seahawks for a 27-17 win Sunday night in a bruising, physical rematch of last season's NFC title game.
Rodgers orchestrated a 10-play, 80-yard scoring drive, capped by a 5-yard scoring pass to Richard Rodgers. A 2-point conversion made it 24-17 with 9:28 left.
Jayrone Elliott made a lunging, one-handed interception of a short pass from Russell Wilson with 6:50 left, one of the rare mistakes in the second half for Seattle's dual-threat quarterback. The Packers (2-0) cashed in with one of Mason Crosby's four field goals on the night for a 10-point lead with 2 minutes remaining.
"We're 2-0. It was a great night here at Lambeau Field," coach Mike McCarthy said. "You sleep better when you win."
The Packers blew a 16-0 lead against the Seahawks in the playoffs last year. They held on after giving up 13-3 lead at halftime on Sunday.
The Seahawks, who fell to the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl last year, dropped to 0-2 for the first time since 2011.
Rodgers connected with favorite target James Jones for a 29-yard touchdown pass on the game's opening series. But the offense got bogged down or had to settle for field goals until the fourth quarter.
Rodgers was clutch against a defense missing safety Kam Chancellor, who is holding out for a new contract. Young players such as second-year tight end Richard Rodgers and rookie receiver Ty Montgomery had big plays. So did Elliott, a second-year backup linebacker.
The defense held on when it mattered in the fourth quarter after giving up chunks of yardage earlier in the second half to dual-threat quarterback Wilson.
The Seahawks' last two series ended in turnovers. Besides Elliott's pick, Micah Hyde recovered a fumble by Fred Jackson with 22 seconds left.
Rodgers took a knee on the next play to end the game. He finished 25 of 33 for 249 yards.
Wilson was 19 of 30 for 206 yards, while running for 78 yards on 10 carries.
The Packers held Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch to 41 yards on 15 carries.
"The defense set the tempo early, particularly on the run defense and the two big (turnovers) at the end," McCarthy said.
Green Bay running back Eddie Lacy left the game in the first quarter with a right ankle injury.
But backup James Starks kept Packers running game going with 95 yards on 20 carries.
Crosby also had a memorable night. With four field goals and an extra point, the veteran set the franchise record with 1,057 career points.