GREEN BAY—Plenty of star receivers have come through Green Bay, from Hutson to Lofton to Sharpe to Driver.
None had eclipsed 1,500 receiving yards in one season, until Jordy Nelson on Sunday.
Nelson reached the milestone during the Green Bay’s 30-20 victory over Detroit at Lambeau Field with six receptions for 86 yards, giving him 98 catches for 1,519 yards on the year.
Nelson broke Robert Brooks’ 19-year-old single-season franchise yardage record (1,497 in ’95) and surpassed 1,500 on a 15-yard pass from Aaron Rodgers over the middle early in the fourth quarter that helped lead to Green Bay’s final points of the day.
“It starts a long time ago, as a kid,” Nelson said when asked whom he has to thank. “I’ve been blessed with some extremely great coaches in my football career growing up. Obviously all of my teammates. It’s a group effort out there.
“Getting the opportunity to play with Aaron and the opportunity he gives us, it’s an honor, and to be part of the history of the Packers, you can’t ask for anything else.”
Receiving mate Randall Cobb added four catches for 80 yards and two TDs as he finished the regular season with 91 receptions for 1,287 yards and 12 TDs.
Together, Nelson and Cobb became the most productive receiving tandem in franchise history in all categories, combining for 189 receptions, 2,806 yards and 25 TDs.
“It’s unbelievable,” Cobb said. “We’ve been blessed with the opportunity and we’ve been able to capitalize in different areas. Records are made to be broken. It’s great to have the record when you think about this franchise and so many guys come before you. It’s an honor just to be mentioned with some of the names we’re mentioned with. It’s been great being here, playing with Jordy, and being able to accomplish so much.”
Hyde breaks free again: Second-year defensive back Micah Hyde doesn’t even return punts full-time, but he brought back a second one for a touchdown this season with a 55-yard return to paydirt on Sunday.
The score came right after the Packers had been stopped on the goal line on their first possession, but the defense held and forced the Lions to punt from deep in their own territory.
“Everything opened up,” Hyde said. “All I had to do was catch the ball and make a cut. I saw the kicker in front of me and I knew I was going to make him miss.”
The punt-return TD was the third of Hyde’s brief career, tying the franchise record also held by Desmond Howard and Will Blackmon.
“It’s awesome,” Hyde said. “I still watch Desmond on TV on College GameDay every Saturday. I respect him, I respect what he’s done. I’m honored.”
A week off: The players were thrilled to earn a first-round playoff bye, which will give them time to rest and recuperate before hosting a game in the divisional round.
“You’ll always take a week off,” Nelson said. “We’ll enjoy it, get healed up, and you know you’re only two games away.”
The Packers, who have the No. 2 seed, will need to win two games to get to the Super Bowl, and their first playoff game will be at noon CT on Sunday, Jan. 11 against either Dallas, Carolina or Arizona.
Seattle has the No. 1 seed and would host the NFC Championship in three weeks should the Seahawks win their divisional game on Saturday, Jan. 10.
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