Packers beat Lions 22-9

By: 

The Green Bay Packers got 16 points from Mason Crosby in a 22-9 win over the Detroit Lions in a key NFC North Division match-up Sunday at Lambeau Field.

With two of the leagues’ most prolific offenses on the field, it was Crosby, the kicker who struggled a season ago but has been perfect this season, went five for five on field goals and helped the Packers maintain a lead throughout the game.

“I’m real proud of Mason,” quarterback Aaron Rodgers said. “It’s great to see him kicking the way we know he’s capable of kicking.”

Crosby never had a five-field goal game before Sunday, an accomplishment that tied him with Chris Jacke and Ryan Longwell for the franchise record for most field goals in a game.

“I’m really pumped about that,” Crosby said. “It’s really cool, but at the same time, it’s awesome that it came with a win. Sometimes you get a lot of field goals and it doesn’t come with a win.”

The Packers’ first two drives sputtered and ended with Crosby field goals, first a 26-yarder and then a 52-yarder right down the middle to give the Packers a 6-0 lead.

The game turned into a kicking duel late in the second quarter when Detroit kicker David Akers one-upped Crosby by nailing a 53-yard field goal to cut the Packers’ lead to 6-3.

In the third quarter, Crosby had a 31-yarder before the Packers’ offense finally struck, scoring on a 83-yard pass play from Rodgers to James Jones.

It was the longest play of Jones’ career and the Packers’ longest play of the season.

Crosby added two field goals, of 42 and 45 yards, in the fourth quarter.

Detroit got on the scoreboard with a 13-yard touchdown on a Matthew Stafford pass to Kris Durham. The Lions, who were missing Calvin Johnson for the game, went for the 2-point conversion but were stopped.

Rookie Eddie Lacy rushed 23 times to finish just a yard short of becoming the third Packers running back to reach 100 yards in the last three weeks.

Randall Cobb ended up being more active in the running game than the passing game, catching four passes for 35 yards, but rushing twice for 72 yards, including a 67-yard run in the third quarter.

“Man, that was an explosive run. I thought he was going to score, but any big play we can have like that, we’ll take,” Lacy said. “He’s a curveball. We have running backs and then we have a receiver who we can put at running back and is just as effective.”

Rodgers finished 20 of 30 for 274 yards and a touchdown.

Jermichael Finley was Rodgers’ favorite target, catching all six of the balls thrown his way for 32 yards. Jones finished with 127 yards on four catches. Jordy Nelson had five catches for 82 yards.

Stafford finished 25 of 40 for 262 yards and a touchdown. He was also sacked five times, twice by linebacker Nick Perry and once each by Mike Neal, Clay Matthews and Brad Jones.

“That is a good defensive front. They have guys that bring a lot of pressure in rushing the passer and they were doing a good job on the back end so I had to hold onto the ball a little bit,” Stafford said. “I thought our offensive line played good, but that is a big defensive front in the middle and we struggled to run the ball today. You have to give your hats off to them.”

Brandon Pettigrew was the leading receiver in Johnson’s place, catching four balls for 59 yards. Reggie Bush was limited to 44 yards on 13 carries.

The Packers did not escape the game unscathed. Robert Francois tore his Achilles. He will miss the rest of the season. Clay Matthews had a thumb injury and Jones suffered a hamstring injury.