GREEN BAY – A sluggish offensive first half ended with two TD drives – the second on a Hail Mary on the final play – and the Packers took a 14-6 lead over the Giants into halftime on Sunday at Lambeau Field.
The second quarter didn’t start any better than the first for Green Bay’s offense, as QB Aaron Rodgers was sacked for the third time in the game, forcing another punt.
After a 15-yard pass to WR Sterling Shepard got the Giants to midfield, the Green Bay defense got the stop. CB Damarious Randall broke up a third-down pass for Shepard, and DB Micah Hyde returned the punt to the Green Bay 22.
The Packers got one first down on a 13-yard pass to WR Randall Cobb, but then WR Jordy Nelson took a hit along the sideline on an incomplete pass and stayed down. A third-down pass for WR Davante Adams was broken up by CB Eli Apple, and the Packers had to punt. P Jake Schum’s 56-yard punt put the Giants back on their own 8.
Nelson was reported in the press box to have a rib injury, return questionable.
The Giants got moving again on an 11-yard run by RB Rashad Jennings and a 51-yard catch-and-run over the middle by TE Will Tye, who beat LB Blake Martinez in coverage. LB Joe Thomas batted down a pass on third-and-4 from the Green Bay 22, though, and the Giants had to settle for another field goal. K Robbie Gould was good from 40 yards out to make it 6-0 with 7:24 left in the half.
Packers WR Jeff Janis returned the ensuing kickoff 33 yards to the Green Bay 44 to start the next drive. A 16-yard pass to TE Jared Cook got across midfield, but another mistake squelched the opportunity. QB Aaron Rodgers was called for intentional grounding on third down, and the Packers had to punt again. Janis tackled return man Dwayne Harris at the New York 8.
The Packers’ defense responded with a big three-and-out, as LB Julius Peppers sacked Eli Manning on third down. LB Blake Martinez left the game with an apparent injury, though. Hyde returned the punt to the New York 38 with 3:45 left in the half.
Rodgers got right to work, hitting Adams for 31 yards down the far sideline to make it first-and-goal on the 7. On second down from the 5, Rodgers shifted around to buy time in the pocket and finally fired to Adams for the TD. K Mason Crosby’s PAT put the Packers ahead, 7-6, with 2:20 left in the half.
Green Bay’s defense got a three-and-out, as S Morgan Burnett stopped RB Bobby Rainey on third-and-1 from the New York 41, anad the Packers called their last timeout with 1:46 left to get the ball back one more time. Hyde returned the punt to the Green Bay 20.
RB Ty Montgomery ran twice for 15 yards, and Rodgers hit Cobb for 15 yards to midfield. A screen pass to Montgomery gained 8 to the 42, and Rodgers threw a Hail Mary to the back of the end zone that was caught by Cobb for the TD on the final play of the half.