Green Bay Packers' Julius Peppers celebrates with
fans after intercepting a pass and returning it for
a touchdown during the second half.
GREEN BAY, Wis. — Aaron Rodgers
handed off to Eddie Lacy, turned and started jogging to the sideline
before his running back had crossed the goal line for a 1-yard
touchdown. It was as if the Green Bay quarterback knew what was
going to happen.
Just another first-half score and big early lead for the Packers at
Rodgers passed for 341 yards and three touchdowns, Lacy accounted
for two scores, and the Packers defense stuffed the high-octane
Philadelphia Eagles for a 53-20 win Sunday.
"This is not easy," Rodgers said.
It sure looks that way, though. The Packers (7-3) blew out another
opponent in the cold comfort of home after a fast start.
"There's a lot of preparation that goes into it," Rodgers added. "It
takes 11 guys to win, to do the job to make something like that
The matchup of NFC contenders quickly turned lopsided after Green
Bay took a 30-6 halftime lead. Rodgers threw for two touchdowns in
the first half, while Micah Hyde scored on a 75-yard punt return.
Green Bay Packers' Micah
Hyde reacts as he runs back a punt 75 yards for a
touchdown during the first half.
Julius Peppers finished off
the Eagles by returning Mark Sanchez's pass 52 yards for
a 39-6 lead in the third quarter, the second
interception return for a score this season for the
"It's good to see that. He pretty much got a gift,"
linebacker Clay Matthews said with a smile.
Philadelphia (7-3) was held to 11 points below its
NFC-leading scoring average by a Packers defense
rejuvenated since Matthews started getting more time at
inside linebacker. Matthews finished with five tackles
and a sack after rushing from his traditional outside
spot unabated to Sanchez.
Green Bay's offense was in good hands again with
Rodgers, who broke Tom Brady's NFL record of 288
straight passes at home without an interception. Rodgers
finished 22 of 36.
The Packers set another record by putting up at least 28
points in a first half for the fourth straight home
game. They've outscored opponents 128-9 before halftime
during that stretch.
"We felt strongly that this game was going to come down
to big plays, the big-play opportunities," coach Mike
McCarthy said, "and I thought our players did an
excellent job in all three phases."
Green Bay Packers' Davante Adams celebrates with
fans after catching a touchdown pass.
Playing with big leads
allows the Packers defense to focus on the pass and hone
in on opposing quarterbacks.
Sanchez flopped in his second start since taking over
for the injured Nick Foles. He was 26 of 44 for 346
yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions.
To make things worse, Sanchez couldn't corral a high
snap out of the shotgun with an empty backfield in the
fourth quarter. Cornerback Casey Hayward scooped up the
loose ball and jogged 49 yards into the end zone with an
escort of two blockers to make it 53-13.
The Packers also got to Sanchez early with sacks on
Philadelphia's first three drives.
"They played outstanding and we played pretty poorly,"
Green Bay Packers' Eddie Lacy runs for a 32-yard
touchdown during the second half.
It was the Eagles' worst
loss under second-year coach Chip Kelly. The previous
low was a 52-20 thrashing at Denver in Week 4 last
season, and Kelly is now the only coach in team history
to allow 50 points twice.
"None of us played where we needed to play against this
team," Kelly said.
The Eagles finally reached the end zone after Sanchez
hit receiver Jordan Matthews for a 10-yard touchdown
pass to make it 39-13 with 2:21 left in the third
The Packers had no such problems.
Rodgers found Jordy Nelson streaking down the right
sideline for a 64-yard completion on the game's third
play from scrimmage — the pass attempt that allowed
Rodgers to break Brady's record.
Rodgers hit Davante Adams for a 6-yard touchdown catch
late in the first quarter. Nelson hauled in a 27-yard
scoring pass with 10:39 left in the second, making the
grab while delicately navigating the sideline near the
pylon to make it 24-3.
NOTES: Nelson finished with four catches for 109
yards, while Randall Cobb had 10 receptions for 129
yards. ... Nelson appeared to reach down at his right
hamstring after making the Lambeau Leap on his
touchdown, but McCarthy said afterward his top receiver
seemed fine. ... Lacy also turned a 32-yard catch into a
touchdown. ... Eagles RB LeSean McCoy had 88 yards on 23