Minnesota overachieved in the public eye view, where they closed the season with four straight wins including the team they faced last week to clinch. The Vikings held home turf against their division rivals from Green Bay, where running back Adrian Peterson ran for 200 yards and they sacked Aaron Rodgers seven times. The Packers won the NFC North and would have a first-round bye had they defeated the Purple People Eaters. After splitting games to begin the year, they finished strong by winning nine of the last 11 to leap frog Chicago and Minnesota for the division title. After last week’s exciting contest with playoff implications, the Cheese Heads return to Lambeau Field for the rubber match.
A valiant effort by my Most Valuable Player, Adrian Peterson, where suddenly 99 yards on the ground isn’t enough. Quarterback Christian Ponder sat this one out, replaced by Joe Webb and a stagnant Vikings offense already missing playmaker Percy Harvin. With the current trend of mobile quarterbacks running the option, there was some belief that the quarterback situation could be a blessing in disguise against a mediocre defense.
In a pregame interview, Clay Matthews mentioned that the Packers defense had to be patient and disciplined to contain A.P. They got a lift with secondary standout Charles Woodson making his return to the field, holding Minnesota to a field goal until they scored a late touchdown with the game in command. Fullback John Kuhn has a knack for scoring in the playoffs, as he had one on the ground and one threw the air. Aaron Rodgers had ample time in the pocket and dissected the defense by taking what was given. Webb couldn’t spark the same magic some of the other young mobile QBs did to reach the playoffs, and it was a long day because this one was decided early. Green Bay advances and will travel across the country to San Francisco. The 49ers won the season opener at Green Bay, so these two will clash as the season has come full circle and one will be sent home.