After a busy stretch that taxed their bodies with three home games in just 12 days earlier this month, the Packers can't complain about not having ample time to get right physically again for Sunday's road matchup with the Falcons.
Ryan tossed an 11-yard touchdown pass to Mohamed Sanu with 31 seconds left to lift the Falcons to a 33-32 victory over the Green Bay Packers before 70,165 jubilant fans on Sunday at the Georgia Dome. Devonta Freeman took a carry outside for the easy first down to keep things going. The Packers dropped to 4-3.
The win was crucial for the Falcons, who blew late-game leads against Seattle and San Diego in their two previous outings. The Packers fell behind 14-0 but came back to win 25-14 in the last meeting at the Georgia Dome on October 9, 2011. "We relished that chance to be finishers". The Falcons then went for two, and failed.
Quinn elected to go for it on a fourth-and-1 from Green Bay's 42.
Adrian Clayborn had the first multi-sack game of his six-year National Football League career, bringing down Rodgers twice in the second half. On the defense, Green Bay is allowing 20.5 points and 314.0 yards per game. They did so with just 31 seconds remaining on an 11-yard pass from Ryan to Mohamed.
The Falcons got off to a hot start on their initial drive, only to be backed up by consecutive penalties that cost them field position. Rodgers came out guns blazing in the first half with 170 yards and three touchdowns. Atlanta needed every one of them, since Jones was held to three catches for 29 yards and targeted only once in the second half - a dropped pass on the final possession. Sanu, who was signed five-year $32.5 million contract as a free agent essentially to replace Falcons career-leading receiver Roddy White, turned in his best game with the Falcons as he caught nine passes for 84 yards and the game-winning touchdown.
"It's just finishing", Sanu said. He also caught Rodgers' first touchdown of the game.
Green Bay (4-3) couldn't overcome the loss of six starters.
Adams escaped and blazed down the field for 22 yards to the Falcons' 24.
Rodgers completed 28 of 38 passes for 246 yards and four touchdowns. Mason Cosby's point after made it 14-10. We wasted a couple drives in the third quarter after a really nice first half. Wide receiver Julio Jones faced double-coverage almost all day, but Mohamed Sanu performed well opposite him and especially during the final drive. This was the first time, Montgomery said, that he had blood in his urine. "Knowing the quarterback on the other side was on point (had something to do with it)". He was later taken to the training table and examined by the doctors. Both Clayborn sacks came in the second half and the pressure often forced Rodgers to vacate the pocket.
After the stop, the Falcons put together a 14-play, 80-yard touchdown drive to retake the lead 26-24.
The Packers for the second straight week essentially abandoned the run. On third-and-13 from Green Bay's 43, Clayborn did a swim move to get past Green Bay guard J.C. Tretter to sack Rodgers and force a punt.
Janis was the fourth Packers pass-catcher to haul in a touchdown. The TD passes went to Jordy Nelson, Allison and Trevor Davis. Quinn said Tamme's status for Thursday's game at Tampa Bay "is in question right now".
"A good number of us are playing because we were the young backup that had to play because of injury, so it's next man up", Packers defensive tackle Mike Daniels said. We are a resilient group. "We learned from those situations, we came back and when we had our opportunity late in the game today, I thought it was executed really well".