GREEN BAY, WIS. —
This was the third game in six weeks between Green Bay and the Vikings, and second in six days. The Packers' loss in Minnesota last weekend cost them the No. 2 seed in the NFC, along with a bye this weekend, and left them looking — dare we say it? — vulnerable going into the playoffs. But with Charles Woodson back from the broken collarbone that's sidelined him since Oct. 21 and Rodgers having all four of his top receivers for, essentially, the first time since Sept. 30, Green Bay looked like a team that could make the kind of deep run it did two years ago when it won the Super Bowl.
Rodgers used so many different options other NFL quarterbacks must have been drooling. He went with Harris on Green Bay's first scoring drive, mixed it up between James Jones, Tom Crabtree and Greg Jennings on the second, and had 22- and 23-yard completions to Jordy Nelson before Kuhn scored on a 3-yard run that put the Packers up 17-3 just before the half. It was more Harris and Kuhn on the final scoring drive.
Harris, who didn't play in the first game against Minnesota this season because he'd only been elevated from the practice squad a day earlier, led the team in receiving (five catches for 61 yards) and rushing (47 yards on 17 carries). Jennings and Jones had four catches each and Nelson had three before hobbling off late in the fourth quarter.
"We have some stuff to work on," Rodgers insisted. "We've got to help our defense out more, close a team out like that. Tough test next week back in San Francisco. We'll be excited about that."
Hey, at least the Packers are still playing. That's more than the Vikings can say.
Ponder's right elbow was hurt last weekend when Morgan Burnett slammed into him on a blitz, and there just wasn't enough time to recover with the short, six-day turnaround. He tested the arm before the game, but the Vikings decided to go with Webb, whose only playing time this year was a couple of handoffs at the end of a blowout of Tennessee in early October.