Packers 45, Lions 41

Flynn's record-setting day finishes Packers' 15-1 regular season

CREATED Jan 1, 2012 - UPDATED: Jan 2, 2012

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  • Matt Flynn. | Photo: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Next game: NFC divisional playoff against TBA opponent
Packers Gameday on Newsradio 620 WTMJ, a live blog here and coverage on Live at 10 on TODAY'S TMJ4


3:49 p.m.

12 lead changes.  1,000 combined passing yards between Packers quarterback Matt Flynn and Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford.

Flynn, a backup quarterback, sets Packers records with 480 yards and six TD throws.

All without Aaron Rodgers, Greg Jennings, Bryan Bulaga, James Starks.  

And now, most of the NFC playoff picture is set.

The Altanta Falcons lead Tampa Bay big, 21-0, in the Georgia Dome right now.

If that score stays the same, the Detroit Lions have to go to New Orleans to face the Saints in the NFC Wildcard, while the Falcons will get the easier matchup with either the Dallas Cowboys and New York Giants.

4th Quarter

3:39 p.m.  Lions' 4th Drive  1:10
A fan runs on the field.  Who tackles him?  Brad Jones.  Mike Curtis style?  Never saw it, because TV cameras didn't want to give the runner on the field the time of day.

Five times, Matthew Stafford has produced fourth-quarter comebacks.  He'll have to go 80 yards to make it six times.

12 lead changes today.  Wow.

Stafford to Calvin Johnson to the 32.  I would throw to him every time if I'm Detroit.

Tick, tock, tick, tock.  Under :60.

Stafford underneath to Smith for 10 yards.  Out of bounds.

New NFL record...nearing 950 passing yards combined.   Wow.

:40 left, DET 42: Great leaping catch by Calvin Johnson.  Tramon Williams all over him.  Time out.  :33 left.

244 yards by Calvin Johnson.  Lions record.

Stafford downfield - PICKED!  DAGGER!  Shields!

3:28 p.m.  Packers' 3rd Drive  2:39
Green Bay 45, Detroit 41
Flynn-Finley 4 yd TD pass

Matt Flynn, earn your big paycheck next year.  It's your time now.  80 yards to a win.  50 or so to a field goal.

HECK OF A DIVING GRAB by James Jones for a first down.

No huddle.

Brandon Saine for seven yards.  Simple dump off.  Two minute warning.

3rd-3 at GB 43: Lions jump into the neutral zone.  Suh.  Thanks, old buddy.  Thanks.

Flynn nearly picked as he threw near Driver and Nelson.  Brandon McDonald nearly ended this game with a pick-six.  Larry: "Dangerous throw."

3rd-5 at DET 47: Flynn downfield for Jones!  YES!  Inside the 10!  Perfect throw!  Fantastic catch in stride!   Matt Flynn with the best game a Packers QB has ever hand, if he throws the game winner.

1st-goal at DET 6: Kuhn to the 4.  Detroit time out.  Take those time outs away.

2nd goal at DET 4: Flynn to FINLEY!  GAME WINNER, we think!!!!!

3:22 p.m.  Lions' 3rd Drive  5:01
Detroit 41, Green Bay 38
Stafford-Scheffler 12 yd TD pass

Stafford to Pettigrew across the 30 yard line.  Bishop was all over him, tipped the throw, but Pettigrew held on.  Fantastic play.

Blitz, and Stafford missed Calvin Johnson....but flaggage.  Underthrown pass, but Tramon Williams will get nailed.  Uncatchable pass.  But the refs give the Lions the call.  Probably not meant to be a makeup call, but it was in effect.

Stafford now inside the 30 yard line...make that inside the two after Scheffler made a juggling catch.  Beat Tramon Williams.  Used his height to get to a ball Williams could not have stopped.

1st-goal at GB 2: Stafford INC.  Add interference on Calvin Johnson!  Wow.  Gutsy on the part of the refs.  He nearly had a mental breakdown.  But Johnson basically pulled Williams down.

1st-goal at GB 12: Stafford incomplete.  Scheffler fell.  Peprah would have stopped the play anyway.

2nd-goal at GB 12: Stafford to the end zone...and Scheffler makes this catch.  Ugh.

3:16 p.m.  Packers' 2nd Drive  7:15
Nelson muffed the punt, but the play had been whistled dead.  That's a PHEW.

3rd-6 at DET 49: make it 3rd-11 thanks to Newhouse malfeasance.

Flynn...slammed down at the 45.  Willie Young buries him in the ground.  He then throws the belt off and fishes for it...or gestures that he's doing that.

3:11 p.m.  Lions' 2nd Drive  8:10
Wow.  Flynn with five touchdown passes.  Tying record by Cecil Isbell, Brett Favre, Aaron Rodgers.  Whoa.  Amazing.

Larry: "OK, fellas, time to play some D.  Any old kind of way."

SACK TIME!  Larry: "Effort sack by Brad Jones."  First sack in three games for Green Bay.

Stafford bombs deep for Megatron and ANOTHER great breakup by Williams.  A leaping breakup.  Johnson argues for someone climbing over his back.  Nothin' doin.

3rd-22 at DET 8: Kevin Smith simply dropping the ball.  Lovely.  Larry: "Nice piece of work, defense."

2:58 p.m.  Packers' 1st Drive  12:59
Green Bay 38, Detroit 34
Flynn-Driver 35 yd TD pass

69 yards to the lead, boys.  69 yards.

The first six come from Grant on a great off-tackle run.  Solid blocking.

3rd-3 at GB 38: neutral zone infraction.  Vanden Bosch gets to Flynn...and he and Sitton have some words after the Vanden Bosch five-yard penalty.

Saine slams across the 45 yard line, for five yards, as he drags four Lions and a Packers blocker.

Defensive holding next on a linebacker for holding.  Huge break after a sack.  And Crabtree and Levy then got into arms at the face mask, too.  Chippy game.

Saine in the flat.  To the 37.  Same kind of play that broke for a touchdown for Grant.  Except Kuhn missed his block.

The Packers now own the all-time team record for most net yards.  Bigger than the Lombardi Packers.  Bigger than the 1996 Packers and the 2010 champs, too.

3rd-8 at DET 35: Flynn to Driver!  SEE YOU LATER!

2:53 p.m.  Lions' 1st Drive  15:00
Morris up the middle.  Naaaaaaaaaaaaathing.  Lovely D.

Stafford to Megatron on a crossing pattern.  Broke Tramon Williams' tackle.  Beat Williams.  He is from another planet.

Morris this time gets seven  yards after a slam up the middle.  Simply great cutback running.

Stafford with forever, but Williams miraculously made a defensive play.  Just a hand on the ball, just enough.

3rd-3 at GB 31: Stafford over the middle....nope!  Titus Young slipped and fell.  Shields missed a pick opportunity.

4th-3 at GB 31: into the wind - why they're not kicking the FG - and Stafford was broken up again!  D.J. Smith and Tramon Williams with the stop.  Williams slammed Pettigrew after he dropped the ball.  Late hit, but not called.

Wayne: "That was a big stop."

3rd Quarter

2:47 p.m.  Packers' 3rd Drive  2:07
False Start.  Sitton.  Turns 2nd-4 into 2nd-9.  Do that in a Super Bowl, and it's curtains.

3rd-6 at GB 24: Flynn hit, sacked, and flaggage.  Suh, who was held by Dietrich-Smith, got to Flynn, then did the Aaron Rodgers championship belt routine.

2:36 p.m.  Lions' 3rd Drive  4:32
Detroit 34, Green Bay 31.
Stafford-Smith 5 yd TD pass
(2pt good, Stafford-Scheffler)
Stafford deep for Megatron.  Un-coverable.  Inside the Green Bay 40.  Williams was burned, and Bush was late to help.  But again, no one can cover him.

Hold on.  McCarthy is challenging the Johnson catch.  And according to the replay, the right foot is out of bounds while Johnson juggles the ball.

But...second look...Johnson foot down, two foot down...control.  Catch.  Then ball knocked out.  Sadly, a good call.

False start on Detroit....and that may have come from the Packers crowd's volume.  One of the loudest crowds in football.

Johnson with a spectacular catch inside the 15.  Turn around.  Back shoulder throw.  Like Jordy Nelson from Rodgers.

Stafford over the middle....Pettigrew's catch stopped by Hawk's challenge.  But another uh oh.  Hawk is limping.

Pettigrew again....out of bounds at the five yard line.  Simple hook pattern, beating Bishop.  The Pettigrew matchup on a linebacker is easy.

3rd-2 at GB 5: Stafford to Smith at the goal line.  Fight there after Bush pounded Smith into the ground trying to break up the catch.

2:26 p.m.  Packers' 2nd Drive  6:39
Green Bay 31, Detroit 26
Flynn-Nelson 57 yd TD pass
Saine muffs the kickoff, but get past the 20.  Did his job.  Not wonderful.  But enough.

Flynn to Nelson - two straight catches, two straight slips by Wright for Detroit, a first down.  Wayne:  "Jordy Nelson is running circles around Eric Wright."

He's already above 300 yards.

Flynn bombing deep to Nelson!  57 yards on play action!!!!!!!

2:17 p.m.  Lions' 2nd Drive  10:11
Detroit 26, Green Bay 24
Stafford-Young 2 yd TD pass

Flaggage.  Desmond Bishop clipped by a Lions offensive lineman.  Wayne: "They are the Raiders of the NFC...the Detroit Lions."

Stafford in first down territory to Pettigrew.  Three Packers were within five yards.  No one near him to stop the pass.  26 yards.  Pathetic.  Wayne: "Everybody was there.  Nobody could make a play."

Burleson inside the 35.  The Packers are getting gashed in the passing game.  Ugh.

Stafford to Johnson inside the 20.  Another first down.  Three throws.  Three first downs.  Whoa.

WHOA!  Stafford sacked with a late flag.  Walden piling on.  Personal foul.  WALDEN!  In the "What were you thinking" category.

Now in the red zone, Stafford to Smith for the first non-first down completion this drive.  Ugh.

2nd-1 at GB 5: with Lambeau Field defeaning, Bush almost gets another INT.  Stafford got in front of the pass to break it up.  But hold on to it, and it's a 99 yard pick-six.

3rd-1 at GB 5: Lions with a false start, to negate a TD pass to Pettigrew...but I think Desmond Bishop just out-boneheaded Walden with a slap to Matthew Stafford's neck two seconds after he threw the ball.

Packers, don't make that mistake.  Yes, Stafford deserves an Academy award, but he shouldn't have even been let into the movie set.

1st-goal at GB 2: Stafford to Young.  A gift TD.

2:13 p.m.  Packers' 1st Drive  11:38
Jarrett Bush again proving the Packers' defensive reputation of a bend, don't break outfit.

3rd-1 at GB 26: Flynn deep drop...over the middle and Jones with a drop of a 25-yard crossing pattern.  Would have been perfect.

2:06 p.m.  Lions' 1st Drive  15:00
Hawk smashes Smith on 2nd down to make sure that Smith didn't get a first down on second down.  Who's on first? What's on second?  Third down!

3rd-1 at DET 29: Bush chases Logan to the corner and loses.  Logan for a first down.

Calvin Johnson was open again.  To the 25.  Wayne: "I have never in my lifetime seen a receiver with more God-given ability than Calvin Johnson...I don't think you can cover him."

Burleson on a receiver screen to the 18 yard line.  Dink, dump, deep, dink, dump.

BUSH!  Pick at the 17 yard line!    Just a bad throw.

2nd Quarter

1:48 p.m.  Packers' 5th Drive  1:55
Saine on 1st-10 gets five yards up the middle.  Why are they not going for the jugular?  Detroit gets the ball to start the half.

Well, they are going no-huddle.

Flynn to Finley.  When they connect, just call them Flynn-ley.  Time out after a first down.

Flynn with Saine and a convoy...but the convoy lost the block.  Sitton got air as Tullock faked him out.

Flynn-ley to the Detroit 36 on a simple square out.  First down.  Time out.

Matt then finds Kuhn for a seven yard gain.  Tick. Tock.  Tick.  Tock.  Under :20.

Flynn to Jones inside the 30 to the 29.  Tick.  Tock.  Tick.  Tock.  Time out with :03.  Should have been within :09.  Take a shot at the end zone, then kick the field goal.

Nope.  Miss.

1:38 p.m.  Lions' 5th Drive  3:37
Logan with a kickoff return...and smashed short of the 25, thanks to D.J.; Smith going helmet to helmet.  No call, though.  Lucky.  No flag.  Schwartz has a lot of beefs with the refs today.

Stafford with forever, and Pettigrew with TONS of room for YAC after the catch.  No one there within five yards.  Bush and Bishop screwed up the coverage.

Stafford to Young this time and another first down.  Bing.  Bam.  Boom. 

Long bomb to Titus Young, and he lost the handle at the goal line.  He had Shields beat big time.  Better hands and the Lions lead.  He caught it at the top of the hands, tried to corral it to his body, but as he fell in to the end zone, he lost control.

3rd-10 at GB 43: Stafford to Scheffler for a first down, beating Bush and Peprah.  Square-out.  Simple.  

After two-minute warning:

Stafford overbombs Johnson as Tramon Williams had a step on him in the corner.

3rd-4 at GB 21: Stafford and off of Megatron's hands!  That would easily have been a touchdown.  High throw, but easy for the all-world wide receiver.

WHAT?  The apocalypse is coming.  Jason Hanson misses inside 40 yards.

1:29 p.m.  Packers' 4th Drive  5:53
Green Bay 24, Detroit 19
Flynn-Nelson 36 yd TD pass

Saine with the kickoff return...does his job.  Gets the 21 yard line.  Not great, but enough.

Flynn to Grant...and he's showing he wants more playing time.  Great five yard smash on the right..  Wells owned Suh.

3rd-4 at GB 27: Flynn to Finley, and he takes a throw that was behind him and makes it a catch.  Again, a Pro Bowl kind of play.

No huddle time.  Bad for bloggers like us.

Flynn deep to Driver....and yellow flaggage comes out after Wright took some green jersey into his grasp.

Lions offsides...Flynn bombing for NELSON!  LARRY: "OH MY WORD!"  Adjusting over Smith in mid-air!

1:24 p.m.  Lions' 4th Drive  7:18
Detroit 19, Green Bay 17
Hanson 30 yd FG

Stafford to Calvin Johnson wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiide open.  No Packers within five yards.  Plus, no Packers within five yards of Stafford in the pass pocket.  To the red zone.

Stafford again with forever, but his pass to Titus Young was out of bounds.

Wait a minute.  That's a TD.  Refs blew the call.  Lions can't challenge it.  But he calls time out, unofficially asking for a replay.  He has no time outs to call.

He sees what I saw on replay.  Lions should have the lead right now.  But unless it's a TD called on the field, it can't be reviewed.

3rd-7 at GB 12: Bush with great coverage on Young and it's 4th down.  Overthrown.  Thrown to Two Rivers.

1:22 p.m.  Packers' 3rd Drive  7:51
A semi-short field now for the Packers.

Flynn finds Jones for 12 yards on one of those one-man screens and Driver's great blocking helped Jones spring open for first down yardage.  Yes, Packers receivers can block, too.

Uh oh.  Smith.  Pick.  Pass behind Nelson.  Slant pattern and the Lions knew it.

1:18 p.m.  Lions' 3rd Drive  8:00
The only negative: the defense doesn't get much rest.  Oh well.

Uh oh.  Return in Lions territory by Logan, and he was spun down at the Packers 47....FUMBLE?  Down by contact?  Refs say yes.  Not so sure based on the view I see.

WOW!  Packers got a break.  That is huge.  Not enough evidence to overturn.

1:12 p.m.  Packers' 2nd Drive  8:18
Green Bay 17, Detroit 16
Flynn-Grant 80 yd TD pass

Saine gets the kickoff return duty here.  He wanted to run out.  Kuhn thought better of it and encouraged him to stay there.

Grant with a swing pass....and it's an 80 yard swing pass!!!!!!!!!!  In the left the north end zone!  Fabulous blocking.

Unsportsmanlike conduct flag on Grant after the TD.  What?  Where?

12:58 p.m.  Lions' 2nd Drive  12:29
Detroit 16, Green Bay 10
Stafford-Johnson 13 yd TD pass

A block in the back moves the Lions back behind the 50 after what would have been a great kickoff return, except for that malfeasance.

Stafford to Pettigrew.  Five yards.  Hawk with a good open field tackle to limit the damage.

Stafford to Scheffler...but it's STOLEN!  So' Oto!  He just plain stole the ball during the tackle.  However, was he down?  Yep.  His butt landed before the ball went down.

Love the aggressiveness by So' Oto, but it's meaningless in this situation.  Not a happy good call there, but a good call there.

As snow continues to fall, Shields with a great open field tackle after a five yard gain.  Could have been muuuuuuuuuuuuch worse.

By the way, Desmond Bishop is back in.

3rd-3 at GB 37: Stafford had his pass broken up by Burnett, who slapped the ball out of Pettigrew's paws.  Fabulous defense again.

4th-3 at GB 37: Easy first down throw to Burleson after a simple crossing pattern.

First down throw now to Pettigrew who beat Desmond Bishop.  Yes, that's a mismatch, but Bishop is also playing not at 100%.

Stafford again to Burleson, who sat in front of the short zone for six yards.  He simply cut in front of Bishop.

3rd-4 at GB 13: Stafford to the end zone - Megatron wide open.  Beat Burnett.  Would have beaten any cornerback in football.

12:53 p.m.  Packers' 1st Drive  14:02
Jordy Nelson lets the Graham roll, then Nelson took it for whatever reason at the five yard line.  Fumble....Jarrett Bush recovers at the five.  Ugh.

Lombardi would have these guys running laps during time outs for their special teams boo-boo's.

Chad Clifton takes a seat...probably out for the day.  Lots of shifts in the line...and that's something to give players playing time at different positions for the playoffs.

3rd-5 at GB 10: Flynn under pressure and though Nelson reached for it with a defender grabbing him multiple times, no flaggage.  Nelson raised his hands in complete disgust.  I would have, too.  Horrible no-call.

12:49 p.m.  Lions' 1st Drive  Continued from 1st Qtr
REVERSE!  Burleson with a first down.  Not a tackler within five yards of him until he gained the first down nine yards downfield.

Walden lost outside contain.

Flaggage on Detroit.  False start.  Refs conference, decide on dinner plans before making the call.

3rd-15 at DET 41: Stafford with forever, bombs for Megatron but Tramon Williams got away with a bump.  Wayyyyyyyyyy overthrown.  Stafford aimed for Oshkosh.

1st Quarter

12:46 p.m.  Lions' 4th Drive  :16
Logan with a darn good return, just short of the 35.

Morgan Burnett saved a heck of a bigger gain after a leg tackle on Smith.  That's a "phew" tackle.

12:39 p.m.  Packers' 4th Drive  4:27
Green Bay 10, Detroit 9
Flynn-Nelson 7 yd TD pass

Grant "like a bulldozer" slams for nine yards.  The fifth tackler was needed to bring him down.

James Jones gest a first down catch on a textbook slant pattern after a textbook play action fake.

Flynn short to Finley who was split out and double covered, but open.  Eight yard gain.

Grant again with a banging run.  He stumbled before hitting the line, but recovered in time to hit enough of a hole for a first down.

Flynn shows some nimbleness as he ran the keep pass....and ran.  For a yard.  Smart to run out of bounds before getting killed.

Flynn downfield - NELSON!  Inside the 10 yard line.  He beat the jersey dragging of Alfonso Smith.

NELSON AGAIN!  Smith beaten on the sideline pattern and Nelson took him with "the knuckle sandwich stiff arm." - Larry

12:33 p.m.  Lions' 3rd Drive  5:55
A nice, extended drive.  Proof the Packers know what they're doing offensively, even if it didn't produce seven points.

Pettigrew snags a Stafford pass on the seam just in front of the Packers deep zone.  21 yards.   More examples of the Packers' lack of pass coverage.

Another example: Megatron (Calvin Johnson) with a heck of a hook pattern to the Packers' 42.  Ugh.

FUMBLE!  Kevin Smith after a shovel pass, and Burnett scoops and takes it 11 yards!  I sense a momentum swing....uh oh.  Desmond Bishop hurt, but coming off under his own power.

12:20 p.m.  Packers' 3rd Drive  11:34
Detroit 9, Green Bay 3
Crosby 22 yd FG

Palmer cheap shots Walden during the punt.  Personal foul.  Why am I not surprised?  Just 30 of them for the Lions this year.

Grant gets his first run....not a whole heck of a lot.  Flynn had Finley miss ANOTHER catch with the ball going through his hands.  Pathetic.

3rd-9 at GB 33: Finley does get the catch, and the hair of my chinny chin chin....gets the first down.

3rd-6 at GB 46: Flynn scrambles and discovers Nelson open at the Detroit 36.  ROlling left, throwing to an open Nelson. 

Wayne: "Boy, that looked like Aaron Rodgers."  Talk about a great compliment.

Grant cuts back and speeds up in the hole for six and a half yards.  Lang and Wells deserve credit for fabulous blocks.

Grant again left side.  Right at the first down marker...but just, wait.  The refs were rather generous.  First down.

Flynn to Nelson again for a shortie on a little hook pattern.  Just six yards, and it will hurt his 18.7 yards per catch average.  Oh well.

3rd-4 at DET 20: Flynn to Finley for first-and-goal yardage.  This time, Finley concentrated on a fingertip catch.  That's what we expect from a Pro Bowler, what Finley wants to be year in, year out.  (And get Pro Bowl money, too.)

1st-goal at DET 7: Flynn dump off through Grant's hands.  Too quick for Grant's hands.  Don't throw 300 mph screen passes to running backs.

2nd-goal at DET 7: Driver mishandled a perfect throw in the end zone from Flynn, though Smith did tip it.

3rd-goal at DET 7: In shotgun, Flynn to Kuhn at the five....nope.  Lions knew what was coming.  They saw him in the flat as he sat there reading War and Peace before the ball arrived.

12:15 p.m.  Lions' 2nd Drive  13:00
Larry: "Let's face it, this start sucked, big time."  Wayne: "Only you could capture the moment like that."

Tim Masthay with the free kick...wait a minute...take 2.  Refs iced him, but after handing ball to Masthay, they said "ball was not ready for play."


Take 2: Logan takes the ball at the 24, and advances it to the 38. 

3rd-7 at DET 41: Stafford misses Kevin Smith on a flat pass as Hawk shadowed him.  Great three-and-out when the team needed it.

12:10 p.m  Packers' 2nd Drive  13:00
Detroit 9, Green Bay 0
Lee downs kickoff in end zone after it went past goal line


WHAT?  ANOTHER JUGGLE?  He actually grabbed the ball out of the end zone, knelt in the end this a safety?  Yep.  End his kickoff return career now.

12:06 p.m.  Lions' 1st Drive  14:22
Detroit 7, Green Bay 0
Stafford-Young 8 yd TD pass

I think on the fumble, Flynn tried to gather the ball in when the rush came towards him, but he didn't tuck it by the ends of the ball.  It was slapped out.

Smith starts with a hole on the right side, and a seven yard gain. 

Megatron inside the 10 yard line to the eight, on a crossing pattern that Tramon Williams, nor any other defender on the planet, could not guard.

1st-goal at GB 8: Play action and Stafford overthrew Nate Burleson by the distance from Lambeau Field to Crivitz.

2nd-goal at GB 8: Stafford hits Young in the end zone, beating Shields.  Turnovers turn into Detroit points.  Larry: "That was kind of an underwhelming first couple minutes."

12:01 p.m.  Packers' 1st Drive  15:00 left in quarter
No Randall Cobb today...and the kickoff is juggled and dropped by Pat Lee.  Lions scrambled for it, but no one ever got a handle on the ball.  Packers thankfully retain possession.  Phew.

Flynn starts play action, and Driver was so wide open that there wasn't a Lion between him and Kroll's Butterburgers.  Auspicious start for Flynn.

Flynn throw No. 2: right to Jordy Nelson along the far sideline.   Pass looked like it was barely tipped....but his second foot was out anyway.

Flynn throw No. 3: overthrowing Nelson on the fly pattern.  Possibly an attempt at a back shoulder throw that turned more into an attempt to lead Nelson upfield.

3rd-10 at GB 37: FUMBLE!   Recovered by Detroit.  Sammy Hill slammed Flynn down.  Lions win that battle of the D-line.


12:00 p.m.
The temps are around 31 degrees with winds as high as 27 miles per hour.  That is not a good formula for a passing game.

Coin toss time!  Walt Coleman with the flip.  Lions call tails.  Packers win - they will receive instead of defer.  The wind matters, I guess.

11:55 a.m.
Imagine how the Lions would feel if the Packers' backup QB, running back and many others win this game over a team with something to fight for, going all-out.

How embarrassing would that be?

Though I'm sure Suh has already started doing rooster cackles around Packers players and coaches, calling them chicken for not playing Rodgers.

10:52 a.m.
Earlier, we speculated how much time Aaron Rodgers would play in today's game.  We have now found out it will be not at all.

Rodgers joins Packers RB James Starks, WR Greg Jennings, OT Bryan Bulaga, LB Clay Matthews and DB Charles Woodson on the inactive list.

That means three things:
1) Matt Flynn will have a full-game tryout today for a new starting job in the NFL with another team in 2012.
2) Rodgers will set the new NFL record for passer rating by a quarterback for a season, besting Peyton Manning's mark in 2004.
3) The Detroit Lions are one step closer to the five seed in the NFL playoffs and an easier path to the divisional playoffs - very possibly against the Packers.

5:58 a.m.
For the first time all year, the 14-1 Green Bay Packers play a game where nothing besides the won-loss record is at stake for them.

But a lot is at stake for their opponent, the 10-5 Detroit Lions.

A win over Green Bay means a guarantee of the top wildcard slot, the 5th NFC seed, and a first-round matchup against the NFC East champions (either the Dallas Cowboys or New York Giants, both 8-7).

If the Lions lose and the 9-6 Atlanta Falcons beat Tampa Bay, Detroit drops to the sixth seed and a first-round game against either the New Orleans Saints or San Francisco 49ers, both 12-3.

Still, there are other factors at stake for Green Bay - mainly the health of their team.

How much do you play Aaron Rodgers and the other starters, and expose them to potential injury against a defense known for dirty play and cheap shots?

By the way, we've tabulated the most possible opponent for the Packers in their divisional round game, and based on all of the 128 possible scenarios that could ensue between Week 17 and the wildcard games, the Falcons have the greatest possibility of being Green Bay's first playoff opponent.

They are followed, in order of possibility, by the Lions, Cowboys and Giants.

Which is the matchup that is most likely in your mind, the matchup you want the most, and the matchup you want the least?  Chime in here on our Facebook page.