Revenge of the Hail Mary propels Packers over Giants
Send a link to a friend
[January 09, 2017]
(The Sports Xchange) - The Green
Bay Packers beat the New York Giants 38-13 on Sunday thanks in no
small measure to a Hail Mary touchdown that provided sweet revenge.
Quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who shocked the Detroit Lions and Arizona
Cardinals with end-of-game Hail Mary touchdowns last season, stunned
the Giants with a 42-yard Hail Mary touchdown to Randall Cobb on the
final play of the first half of Sunday's NFC wild card playoff game
at frigid Lambeau Field in Green Bay.
That play gave the Packers a 14-6 half-time lead en route to a date
at top-seeded Dallas in the divisional round next Sunday.
In 2011, the Packers went 15-1 in the regular season but were routed
37-20 by the Giants in a divisional game at Lambeau. On the final
play of the first half of that game, Eli Manning connected with
Hakeem Nicks for a 37-yard Hail Mary touchdown to give the Giants a
This time, Rodgers rolled out to his right and uncorked a high pass
into the end zone. Cobb was behind four Giants defenders and the
ball dropped over their hands and into the waiting mitts of Cobb.
Cobb, who had missed the past two games with an injured ankle, added
two touchdowns in the second half -- tying an NFL playoff record
with three touchdown receptions -- and Rodgers destroyed a Giants
defense with three All-Pros in the secondary for 362 yards and four
Rodgers led the Packers to their seventh consecutive win. During
that span, he has thrown 19 touchdown passes and zero interceptions.
The Giants were down, but they weren't out after the Hail Mary,
thanks in part to a controversial decision by Packers coach Mike
McCarthy early in the third quarter.
Facing a fourth-and-1 from its 42, McCarthy kept the offense on the
field and the Giants stuffed running back Ty Montgomery. One play
later, the Giants were in the end zone when Manning found Tavarres
King for a 41-yard touchdown.
[to top of second column]
Green Bay Packers tight end Jared Cook (89) runs past New York
Giants outside linebacker Jonathan Casillas (52) in the NFC Wild
Card playoff football game at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Dan
Powers/The Post-Crescent via USA TODAY Sports
Packers, however, answered. Having moved the ball to midfield,
Rodgers went after slot cornerback Trevin Wade, who was in the game
for injured veteran standout Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.
First, it was a 20-yard gain over the middle to Davante Adams. Then
it was a 30-yard catch-and-run touchdown by Cobb to put Green Bay in
On the ensuing kickoff, New York's Bobby Rainey fielded the ball at
the sideline but couldn't keep his balance, stepping out of bounds
at the 3. The Packers forced a punt and took advantage of great
field position to tack on a 32-yard field goal by Mason Crosby.
The Giants needed an answer but couldn't get it, with Odell Beckham
unable to hold onto a third-down pass in which he was wide open for
a big gain.
Manning threw for 299 yards, but Beckham, just like the Week 5 loss
to the Packers at Lambeau, was a nonfactor. In a playoff debut,
Beckham caught four passes for 28 yards while being targeted 11
(Editing by Andrew Both)
[© 2017 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2017 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.