Packers too good for Rams, enter bye with important victory

Green Bay Packers (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

A lot has changed since the Green Bay Packers and Los Angeles Rams battled at Lambeau Field in January for a place in the NFC Championship Game.

The story remained the same — the Packers were simply too good for the visitors.

After a close first half that saw both teams hit on big plays and make some costly errors, we were all set for a nail-biter in the final two quarters.

Green Bay had other ideas, though.

The Packers were dominant in the third quarter, scoring 17 unanswered points to put the game away. By the time the Rams answered with a touchdown and field goal of their own in the fourth, it was too little, too late.

Aaron Rodgers, despite battling through an injury, put in one of his best performances of the year. He was accurate, got the ball out of his hands quickly, and made good decisions all afternoon long.

Rodgers finished with 307 passing yards and two touchdowns, while also running in a score.

On the other side, Rams QB Matthew Stafford posted nice numbers and he made some big-time plays, but the Packers defense had their way for the most part.

Rashan Gary forced a fumble on Stafford in the first quarter which set up the Packers’ first touchdown, then Rasul Douglas intercepted a pass and took it to the house. Green Bay’s defense forced two turnovers, made two sacks and five QB hits, and defended eight passes.

Kenny Clark, Gary, and Douglas were standout performers on defense.

For the Packers, this was a huge win. The Minnesota Vikings lost to the San Francisco 49ers, which means Green Bay has extended its lead in the NFC North to 3.5 games. The Packers also closed the gap at the top of the NFC while securing a crucial head-to-head tiebreaker over the Rams.

They now enter a much-needed bye week with a strong 9-3 record with three of their remaining five games to be played at Lambeau Field.