2014 DRAFT GUIDE
5 things to know after Packers beat Browns 31-13

By GENARO C. ARMAS - AP Sports Writer
    2013-10-21 03:32

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) - So many injuries, so many unfamiliar names playing for the Packers.

However, Green Bay always has a chance with Aaron Rodgers calling the shots.

Rodgers threw for 260 yards and three touchdowns, Eddie Lacy ran for another score, and the defense came up clutch in a 31-13 win over the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.

''Hang with us fans, it might not be the prettiest game,'' Rodgers said. ''But we've got to kind of win with defense, not turn the ball over and make the plays that are there.''

Rodgers finished 25 for 36 despite being without two of his top targets in injured receivers James Jones and Randall Cobb.

Then, tight end Jermichael Finley left on a stretcher with about 10 minutes to go with a neck injury after a late hit by Browns safety Tashaun Gipson on a 10-yard gain. The team later said Finley had movement and feeling in his extremities.

The Packers (4-2) pressed on during a rainy night and also overcame 10 penalties. The defense held Willis McGahee to 39 yards on 11 carries and recorded three sacks despite playing without injured outside linebackers Clay Matthews and Nick Perry.

Rodgers was among the Packers' veterans who helped young players get through a tough week. Cleveland's Brandon Weeden could have used his advice. He struggled again and finished 17 for 42 for 149 yards with an interception and a 2-yard touchdown pass to Jordan Cameron with 6:09 left.

Five things learned in the win that vaulted the Packers atop the NFC North:

SCARY SIGHT: Finley was taken to a hospital for further tests after the hit from Gipson. He was still on his side for a few minutes while being attended to on the field before being wheeled off into the tunnel.

Gipson, called for an unnecessary roughness penalty, said he went over to pray while Finley was being treated.

''I'm pretty sure I can get in contact with him and when I do I'm definitely going to shoot my condolences to him,'' he said. ''There wasn't any ill intent.''

Finley had five catches for 72 yards and a first-quarter touchdown that opened the scoring for the Packers, pinballing off defenders on a 10-yard reception.

WEEDEN WOES: The Browns' quarterback didn't help his case in remaining the starter.

The rain didn't help. Neither did dropped passes, especially early in the game.

Coach Rob Chudzinski said switching to backup Jason Campbell on Sunday wasn't an option. He also didn't give Weeden a resounding endorsement.

''I'll look at the film and we'll evaluate his play and everybody's play after the game,'' Chudzinski said.

Weeden vowed to keep fighting on.

''You can cuss me all you want, but I'm going to leave everything out on that field,'' Weeden said. ''I'm going to fight until that clock says zero.''

FRESH FACES: Packers receiver Jarrett Boykin made the most out of his opportunity with Cobb and Jones out, finishing with career-highs of eight catches for 103 yards and a 20-yard touchdown reception.

Jamari Lattimore also had a good day with 12 tackles in place of injured inside linebacker Brad Jones. Rookie Nate Palmer had his moments on the outside, helping to fill in for Matthews and Perry.

''The will to compete is there - from everybody, from a rookie to a 15-year veteran,'' Palmer said.

THIRD DOWNERS: If only the Browns could force punts after two downs.

The defense was bad again on third down, especially in the first half, when Green Bay converted 6 of 8 opportunities. Three came on the Packers' second series, which ended with Lacy's 1-yard touchdown run for a 14-0 lead late in the first quarter.

Cleveland was better in the second half, holding the Packers to 1 of 5 on third downs. But the damage was done.

''We got off to a poor start and fought back trying to get back all night,'' Chudzinski said.

LOOKING AHEAD: No rest for the weary Packers - the Vikings are next in Minnesota.

Green Bay coach Mike McCarthy reminded his players in the victorious locker room. It's the start of an especially critical two-game stretch for Green Bay against divisional rivals, with the Bears visiting Lambeau for a prime-time showdown Nov. 4.

''The last thing I left the team with,'' McCarthy said. ''I'm sure they wanted a day off and all that stuff, but it's Minnesota week and that's important.''

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

---

Follow Genaro Armas at http://twitter.com/GArmasAP

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Mike PounceyJul 23 12:33p

Miami Dolphins C Mike Pouncey (hip) could miss the first eight weeks of the season because of the hip surgery he had this offseason, according to a source. He [ More ]

Evan RodriguezJul 23 12:23p

Buffalo Bills FB Evan Rodriguez (cramps) and TE Chris Gragg (cramps) were hospitalized because of complications from cramps and were getting hydrated, according to head coach Doug Marrone. Rodriguez [ More ]

Dustin HopkinsJul 23 12:20p

Buffalo Bills PK Dustin Hopkins will have to try to make the roster as a kickoff specialist, according to head coach Doug Marrone.

Vernon DavisJul 23 12:13p

San Francisco 49ers TE Vernon Davis has reported to camp Wednesday, July 23, according to an Instagram post from 49ers S C.J. Spillman.

Jason BabinJul 23 12:03p

New York Jets signed DE Jason Babin (Jaguars) to a two-year contract, with the second year being a team option. He's expected to serve as a situational pass rusher.

Reggie WayneJul 23 11:13a

Indianapolis Colts WR Reggie Wayne (knee) said he has been medically cleared to practice. He's expected to be limited, though, especially in the near future.

Kraig UrbikJul 23 10:53a

Buffalo Bills OG Chris Hairston continued to receive first-team repetitions at right guard in the red zone drills Wednesday, July 23. OG Kraig Urbik struggled with first-team the previous day.

Jamaal CharlesJul 23 09:53a

Updating previous reports, Kansas City Chiefs RB Jamaal Charles will not report to training camp Wednesday, July 23, barring a major contract breakthrough.

Vick BallardJul 23 09:33a

Indianapolis Colts RB Vick Ballard (knee) reported to camp and has passed his physical.

Rob GronkowskiJul 23 08:53a

New England Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski (knee) has been cleared for contact and will not be placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list, according to head coach Bill Belichick.

Evan RodriguezJul 23 08:43a

Buffalo Bills TE Chris Gragg (cramps), FB Evan Rodriguez (cramps) and CB Brandon E. Smith (leg) were out of practice Wednesday, July 23. OT Seantrel Henderson (hip) returned to action.

Rashad JenningsJul 23 08:23a

New York Giants RBs Rashad Jennings, David Wilson and Andre Williams could be used in a three-man rotation this season to keep Jennings fresh.

Caleb McSurdyJul 23 02:53a

The St. Louis Rams waived four players Tuesday, July 22, as they cut loose OL Abasi Salimu, WR Diontae Spencer, LB Caleb McSurdy, and LB Tavarius Wilson.

Carl NicksJul 23 02:43a

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Bobby Rainey, G Carl Nicks and DE Da'Quan Bowers may be fighting for roster spots once training camp begins due to other competition for their [ More ]

Chris CulliverJul 23 01:13a

San Francisco 49ers CB Chris Culliver (knee) has been cleared to take part in practice when training camp opens this week. He suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament to [ More ]

Ben TateJul 23 01:13a

Cleveland Browns RBs Ben Tate and Terrance West will compete for the starting tailback job during training camp and the preseason, and it's a battle head coach Mike Pettine [ More ]

Joel BitonioJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns OG Joel Bitonio (ankle) lined up with the first-team offense during organized team activities (OTAs), and he held the spot until he suffered a sprained ankle June [ More ]

Paul McQuistanJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns OLs Garrett Gilkey, Paul McQuistan and Jason Pinkston are fighting for position in the pecking order at right guard, and one of them might even push OG [ More ]

Craig RobertsonJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns LBs Christian Kirksey and Craig Robertson will compete for an inside linebacker job during training camp, according to head coach Mike Pettine.

Joe HadenJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns CBs Justin Gilbert and Buster Skrine will compete for the starting cornerback job opposite CB Joe Haden in training camp. 'We weren't going to hand Justin that [ More ]

Gary BarnidgeJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns TEs Gary Barnidge and Jim Dray will battle for the No. 2 tight end spot during training camp and the preseason.

Eli ManningJul 23 12:23a

New York Giants QB Eli Manning (ankle) has shown no ill effects during camp from ankle surgery that sidelined him for earlier offseason activities.

Tom CoughlinJul 22 11:53p

New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin was not happy that several players were forced to leave practice with dehydration issues Tuesday, July 22. 'It pisses me off,' Coughlin [ More ]

Brandon LloydJul 22 11:23p

San Francisco 49ers WR Stevie Johnson is the frontrunner for the No. 3 WR job, according to Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com, but he added that neither Johnson nor WR [ More ]

Darren SprolesJul 22 11:13p

Philadelphia Eagles RB Darren Sproles' ability to win one-on-one matchups in space is what head coach Chip Kelly plans to exploit this season. Kelly said opposing defenses played a [ More ]

Thaddeus LewisJul 22 11:03p

Buffalo Bills QB Thaddeus Lewis and WR Tori Gurley had miscommunications on three occasions Tuesday, July 22, resulting in two incomplete passes and an interception. Joe Buscaglia of WGR [ More ]

Thaddeus LewisJul 22 10:53p

Buffalo Bills QB Thaddeus Lewis and QB Jeff Tuel are in an open competition for the backup quarterback job, head coach Doug Marrone said Tuesday, July 22.

Brian MoormanJul 22 10:43p

Buffalo Bills P Brian Moorman was more effective than P Jake Dombrowski on punts in terms of both average hang time and average distance Tuesday, July 22.

Titus YoungJul 22 09:53p

Updating a previous story, free-agent WR Titus Young (Lions) was charged with felony battery with serious bodily injury from an alleged July 8 incident inside a Los Angeles-area hospital. [ More ]

Ryan MathewsJul 22 09:43p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews' rookie contract will expire after the 2014 season, which means this could be his final year with the organization, in the opinion of [ More ]

Mario WilliamsJul 22 09:43p

Buffalo Bills DE Mario Williams, DT Marcell Dareus and DT Kyle D. Williams were all rotated out of the lineup at times during team drills Tuesday, July 22. LB [ More ]

Nigel BradhamJul 22 09:23p

Buffalo Bills LB Nigel Bradham was one of eight players to record sacks during team drills Tuesday, July 22. The team's pass rush has been consistent since camp began, [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group