MINNEAPOLIS – The Packers’ defense played a whale of a game and RB Aaron Jones rushed for two second-half touchdowns as Green Bay won the NFC North title with a 23-10 victory over the Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium on Monday night.
The Packers improved to 12-3 and can clinch a first-round bye in the playoffs with a win at Detroit next week. They could also get the NFC’s No. 1 seed with a win and a loss by San Francisco at Seattle. Minnesota is also in the playoffs, at 10-5, and will be the No. 6 seed.
The Packers overcame three first-half turnovers and a 10-3 deficit, scoring 20 unanswered points to win their first division championship since 2016. The defense also sacked QB Kirk Cousins five times – including 3½ by Za’Darius Smith – and limited Minnesota to just seven first downs and 139 total yards.
Jones finished with 23 carries for 154 yards and upped his total of rushing touchdowns on the season to 16. His 56-yarder midway through the fourth quarter was the backbreaker and made it a two-score game. Jones now has 19 total TDs on the year, one shy of Ahman Green’s single-season team record from 2003.
WR Davante Adams added 13 receptions for 116 yards, his second career 13-catch game. He’s just the second Packers player with two 13-catch games, joining Don Hutson, who holds the single-game team record with 14 catches from back in 1942.
QB Aaron Rodgers finished 26-of-40 for 216 yards with one interception for a 68.3 passer rating.
The Packers’ defense more than did its job, limiting the Vikings to 10 first-half points off the three turnovers.
Playing without RB Dalvin Cook and top backup Alexander Mattison, Minnesota could not generate a rushing attack and had only 57 total yards on the ground.
In addition to the five sacks, Cousins also was picked off once, by CB Kevin King on a deep ball in the third quarter, as he finished 16-of-31 for 122 yards, one TD, and a 58.8 rating.
Here’s all the game action from the live blog: