Red-hot Packers crush Giants, Dallas up next | Cowboys can’t feel too confident seeing Aaron Rodgers and the Packers coming to town
When Aaron Rodgers said the Green Bay Packers were going to run the table, everyone assumed he was talking about the regular season.
Maybe he meant the playoffs as well.
The Packers didn’t start Sunday’s wild-card playoff game against the New York Giants that well, but they finished it looking like one of the most dangerous teams left in the playoffs. After falling behind 6-0, the Packers outscored the Giants 38-7 from the final few minutes of the second quarter on, and won 38-13. That was without Jordy Nelson, who was knocked out of the game in the first half after taking a helmet to the ribs. Rodgers simply took over.
He bobbed and weaved for one touchdown to Davante Adams. Then he hit Randall Cobb on a Hail Mary to end the first half. In the second half, he played like the best quarterback on the planet. He was on fire after halftime, and finished 25 of 40 for 362 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions. That was against a very good Giants defense. It was against a Giants defense that’s better than the Dallas Cowboys’ defense that Rodgers will see next week.
The Cowboys are the No. 1 seed in the NFC, but they’ll need to play a tremendous game to beat Green Bay next week. The Packers have won seven in a row, going back to Rodgers’ “run-the-table” proclamation. Rodgers has 22 touchdowns and no interceptions in his past eight games. Sunday’s game against the Giants was his third straight game with four touchdowns and no picks. His last interception was Nov. 13.
Dallas and the New England Patriots have been the NFL’s best teams for most of the season. But the best team doesn’t always win in the playoffs. Sometimes the hottest team can roar through the postseason and to the Super Bowl. That’s what happened at the end of the 2010 season. The Packers got into the playoffs as a wild-card team, then Rodgers played out of his mind as they went on to win Super Bowl XLV. When Rodgers gets on a roll like he did that postseason, opponents need to play a near-perfect game to beat the Packers.
We’re six years beyond Rodgers’ only Super Bowl championship, but the similarities to this season are hard to miss. The Cowboys have had a tremendous season. Now they have their biggest challenge coming to Texas.