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RECAP: Lions vs. Packers

For 30 minutes Sunday, the Lions played toe-to-toe with one of the hottest teams in the NFL right now.

But in the end, Green Bay had just too much firepower to contain in the second half, and the Packers walked out of Ford Field with a hard-fought 31-24 victory over Detroit.

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers started the game hitting his first 10 passes, and finished the day with four total touchdowns.

Green Bay came into the contest with the league's No. 1 scoring offense and No. 2 overall offense. After scoring on their first two drives, the Lions' defense buttoned up a bit in the second quarter and forced a couple punts.

Detroit got first-half touchdowns from tight end T.J. Hockenson on a 1-yard shovel pass and from D'Andre Swift on a 3-yard run, and were tied with Green Bay 14-14 at the half.

Green Bay came out in the third quarter after receiving the second-half kickoff and marched 75 yards in 14 plays (17 snaps with three penalties) and scored on a 6-yard Rodgers scramble.

Detroit followed with a three and out on their next possession.

Green Bay then marched the field again on their next drive and scored on a 4-yard pass from Rodgers to tight end Robert Tonyan that capped a 12-play, 79-yard drive that took another 7:49 off clock to take a 28-14 lead.

That three-possession sequence was the key to the game.

Detroit ran three plays, gained four yards and possessed the ball for one minute and 21 seconds in the third quarter. Green Bay ran 21 plays for 143 yards and held the ball for 13 minutes and 39 seconds.

Detroit climbed to within 28-21 after a 2-yard Kerryon Johnson touchdown run midway through the fourth quarter, but Green Bay's Mason Crosby extended the lead to 31-21 with a 57-yard field goal with just over three minutes left.

The Lions were forced to try and make a late comeback without quarterback Matthew Stafford, who suffered a rib injury the play before the Johnson touchdown on a scramble. He did not return.

Backup Chase Daniel led Detroit to a late FG, but when Detroit didn't recover the subsequent onside kick, the comeback was over.

QB comparison: Stafford was an efficient 24-of-34 passing for 244 yards with a touchdown, no interceptions and a 100.6 passer rating in three and a half quarters of work.

Daniel completed three of his six passes for 29 yards finishing the game at quarterback for Detroit.

Rodgers finished 26-of-33 passing for 290 yards with three touchdowns, no interceptions and a 133.6 passer rating. He also rushed for a touchdown.

Promising trend: The Lions allowed 106 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns in the first half against Chicago last week, but buckled down in the second half, allowing just 34 yards and no touchdowns.

Detroit's defense picked up where they left off in terms of playing the run. The Packers rushed for just 42 yards in the first half. They finished with 120 for the game, but that's still below Detroit's average rushing yards allowed per game this season (133.9) and well below the 259 rushing yards the Lions allowed in the first matchup between these two teams Week 2. Green Bay's longest run Sunday was 11 yards.

View photos from Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay Packers Week 14 game at Ford Field on Sunday, Dec. 13, 2020 in Detroit

Worrisome trend: Playing without defensive end Everson Griffen after he was placed on the Reserve-COVID 19 list on Saturday, Detroit was shorthanded on the edge and the Packers took advantage. Christian Jones, Austin Bryant and Da'Shawn Hand tried to fill the void, but to no real avail. The Lions didn't record a single sack of Rodgers in the contest and had one quarterback hit on him all game.  

Injury report: Stafford took a big hit at the Packers' 3-yard line midway through the fourth quarter. He got up and immediately grabbed his left side. He stayed in for one more play - the Johnson touchdown run - but went to the sideline and was immediately surrounded by doctors and trainers. Stafford tried to walk it off. He grabbed a football and threw one pass and then grabbed the side again and went to the locker room. He came back and tried to throw some more passes, but it was determined he couldn't return.

Already thin at cornerback playing without Jeff Okudah, Desmond Trufant and Tony McRae, the Lions lost cornerback Darryl Roberts to a hip injury in the third quarter and he did not return.

Up next: at Tennessee (9-4).

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