It wasn’t easy, but the roll the Packers have been on as of late continued Sunday as they topped the Lions in Detroit 24-20.
Aaron Rodgers threw two touchdown passes, including a 22-yarder to Randall Cobb with 1:55 left, and the Packers came through with their 5th win in a row.
The Pack sealed the win when kicker Mason Crosby made a 39-yard field goal with 19 seconds to go after missing two field goals earlier in the game.
It was a tough day for Lions QB Matthew Stafford, who threw two picks in the contest, one of which was brought back 72 yards by Packers safety M.D. Jennings for a score.
Stafford also lost a fumble in the four-point loss that puts the Lions at now 4-6, while the Pack remain well in the race in the NFC North and the playoff race at 7-3.
Green Bay moved a half-game behind first-place Chicago in the NFC North. The Bears play at San Francisco on Monday night.
Detroit has dropped two in a row, making its goal of playing in consecutive postseasons very difficult.
Rodgers went 19 for 27 for 236 yards with two TDs, the first of which was a 20-yard connection with wide open Jermichael Finley early in the second quarter to give Green Bay its first lead, and an interception.
Cobb had nine catches for 74 yards and the game-winning TD, a twisting grab in the end zone. Finley had three receptions for 66 yards and a score.
James Starks helped the Packers strike somewhat of an offensive balance with 74 yards rushing on 25 carries.
Stafford completed just 17 of 39 passes – missing many receivers badly – for 266 yards with a 25-yard TD pass to Calvin Johnson that put Detroit ahead 17-14 late in the third quarter.
He lost a fumble at midfield in the third quarter one drive after throwing a pass directly toward rookie cornerback Casey Hayward, who started for the injured Sam Shields.
In Detroit’s last home game three weeks ago against Seattle, Stafford threw a winning TD pass with less than a minute left for the second time this season and for the fourth time in his four seasons.
He didn’t come close to pulling off another rally.
The Lions lost 5 yards after Rodgers’ second TD pass and on the final play of their next possession without a timeout, Stafford threw a 30-yard pass to Johnson and the receiver’s lateral was recovered by safety Jerron McMillian at the Green Bay 30.
Johnson, who dropped some passes, had five receptions for 143 yards and caught a TD pass from Stafford for the second straight week after they failed to connect for a score in the first eight games of the season.
Mikel Leshoure had 84 yards rushing and a 1-yard TD run that gave Detroit a 10-7 lead midway through the second quarter.
In the end though, it was a huge win for the Pack, who now can get set for the final six games as they take on the Giants next Sunday night in New Jersey.