GREEN BAY—All he was thinking about after the game were the plays he felt he screwed up on.
But Jordy Nelson made plenty of plays on Sunday, too, enough to record the first 200-yard receiving game for the Packers in 10 years in a 31-24 victory over the Jets at Lambeau Field.
“It’s what needed to be done to win the game. That’s all that matters,” said Nelson, who signed a multi-year contract extension this summer. “If it proves your worth, I don’t think that really matters. We want to go out and do our job. That’s all we want to do.”
Nelson’s nine receptions for 209 yards tied him with Don Hutson (1942 vs. Cleveland Rams) for the fourth-most receiving yards by a Packers player in team history. It’s Green Bay’s first 200-yard receiving game since Javon Walker had exactly 200 yards at Indianapolis in 2004.
It also gave Nelson a new nickname, at least temporarily.
“Look at what he did. Mr. 200,” fellow receiver Randall Cobb said.
Nelson, whose previous single-game career high was 162 yards against Detroit in the 2011 regular-season finale, nearly didn’t make it. He was at 194 yards midway through the fourth quarter, but he and QB Aaron Rodgers couldn’t connect on a third-and-2 – one of the plays Nelson was miffed at himself about – and the Packers had to punt.
But on the game-clinching drive, Rodgers hit Nelson for 15 yards on third-and-3 just after the two-minute warning to seal the game, as the Jets were out of timeouts.
“You just don’t want to get stuck at 195 or 190,” Nelson said of the milestone, recalling James Jones’ close call a year ago, when he reached 178 yards, coincidentally also in Week 2. “It’s still a good day but you’re right there. Two hundred just sounds better.”
The play that made it happen, of course, was the 80-yard touchdown catch on the first play of a late third-quarter drive, right after the Jets had tied the score at 24.
Rodgers executed a play-action fake out of a double-tight end set as Nelson ran an out-and-up route. Rodgers hit him between two defenders, Nelson broke the safety’s tackle attempt and was off to the races.
“If you can get it in one shot, obviously, we’ll take it,” said Nelson, whose name was being chanted by the Lambeau faithful as he left the field following the game. “We’ve been able to connect on those a few times in the past. It’s good to get another one.”
It was Nelson’s fourth career TD catch of 80-plus yards, tying him with Greg Jennings for the franchise record.
Rookie splash: Rookie receiver Davante Adams only played a handful of snaps in Week 1 at Seattle, but he made his presence known on Sunday.
Adams caught five passes for 50 yards, including two near-TDs. On his 24-yard reception on a slant pass in the second quarter, he had some open field and felt he should have scored, but he cut it back and was tackled at the 6-yard line.
Then, in the third quarter, on his grab right at the front pylon of the end zone, he was ruled out of bounds at the 1. Cobb ended up getting the TD receptions in both instances.
“I thought I scored,” Adams said of the second one. “I saw the replay and it looked like I scored. My feet were in, but I guess the ball never crossed.”
Still, Adams appeared to assume the No. 3 receiver spot following a dropped pass over the middle by Jarrett Boykin in the second quarter. Whether or not he’s officially named the No. 3, he has put himself in position for more playing time for sure.
“It’s big because that’s the type of stuff I have to do to keep showing my whole team and the (coaching) staff that I’m capable of playing and making plays at this level,” he said. “My main goal is to make sure everybody has the same confidence in me that I do.”
Bouncing back: Derek Sherrod started at right tackle in place of the injured Bryan Bulaga on Sunday, and he avoided the glaring miscues that plagued him in Week 1 in Seattle.
Rodgers was sacked early by Quinton Coples, who was working against Sherrod on the play, but that came as Rodgers was trying to slip out of the pocket and Coples was able to grab the QB’s jersey.
It probably helped Sherrod that Jets DE Muhammad Wilkerson was ejected during the third quarter for throwing punches following a two-point conversion play, because the Jets move Wilkerson around and he likely would have been lined up against Sherrod at least occasionally. But Sherrod had been playing well before that, too.
“The guy had a good bounce-back game,” right guard T.J. Lang said. “Last week was a tough environment to get thrown in the fire mid-game. I know I’ve had to do it before. It’s tough to adjust in that kind of atmosphere.
“He’s a guy that everybody’s confident in. He has a lot of confidence himself. It’s been awhile since he’s played some football, and I think he’s doing a hell of a job for us. If he has to play again, I know everybody is 100 percent comfortable in him being the guy.”
Long range: Kicker Mason Crosby’s 55-yard field goal late in the second quarter was the longest ever by a Packers kicker at Lambeau Field. Crosby had the previous mark, a 54-yarder against Chicago in 2012.
The only field goals longer in stadium history were David Akers’ 63-yarder for San Francisco in Week 1 of the 2012 season, and Josh Brown’s 58-yarder for Seattle in 2003.
“That was pretty cool,” said Crosby, who made the 55-yarder by plenty to pull the Packers within 21-9 at the time. He was 3-for-3 on field goals for the day.
“I feel like I haven’t tried as many long ones at Lambeau throughout my career, so it was nice to drill that one through and hopefully get some momentum for us there before halftime.”
The 55-yarder was just the sixth longest of Crosby’s career. He has the franchise record at 58 yards, plus two each from 57 and 56.
Injury update: Defensive back Micah Hyde and linebacker Andy Mulumba both left the game with knee injuries.
COMPLETE GAME COVERAGE