Packers shut down Lions
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) Aaron Rodgers got knocked around again but still managed to have a big day against the Detroit Lions' defense, throwing for 358 yards with two touchdowns and an interception in the Green Bay Packers' 26-0 victory Sunday.
Donald Driver became the franchise's career receptions leader with a first-quarter catch and rookie outside linebacker Clay Matthews III had two sacks as the Packers (3-2) turned in a dominant defensive effort against an undermanned Lions offense.
Detroit (1-5) was without rookie quarterback Matthew Stafford and wide receiver Calvin Johnson because of injuries - and it showed, as the Lions managed only 79 yards of total offense in the first half. Backup quarterback Daunte Culpepper hurt his hamstring in the third quarter and was replaced by third-stringer Drew Stanton.
But the Lions' loss wasn't nearly as lopsided as it could have been, thanks in large part to continued breakdowns and penalties by the Packers' offensive line. Rodgers was sacked five times, and Green Bay lost left tackle Chad Clifton to an injury in the third quarter; he appeared to hurt the same right ankle that caused him to miss the previous two games.
Green Bay started fast Sunday, scoring a pair of quick touchdowns for a 14-0 lead with 7:20 left in the first quarter. The offense fell into a lull after that, settling for field goals on repeated scoring chances.
But the Packers' mistakes and missed opportunities didn't really matter against the lowly Lions, who lost their 19th straight game in the state of Wisconsin - including last year's painful season finale at Lambeau Field that sealed their dubious place in league history at 0-16.