Final

Packers 21

(8-2, 3-2 away)

Vikings 31

(3-7, 3-3 home)

Coverage: FOX

1:00 PM ET, November 17, 2002

 

1 2 3 4 T
GB 0 7 7 721
MIN 14 0 7 1031

Favre intercepted three times in loss

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Playing in Minnesota never seems to work out well for the Green Bay Packers.

Allen's Analysis
Eric Allen
Question on the Packers: Any significant reason why Favre struggles annually in the Metrodome?
It's a mystery. For years, Favre has struggled inside on turf (he's now 2-9 in the Metrodome). I believe it's more than Brett Favre's problem -- it's a team thing. And the problem is more mental than physical. Physically, the Packers are a better team than the Vikings. But you could see it in the Packers' facial expressions and body language -- they need to get past that mental block.

Question on the Vikings: Will this win spark them, or should we expect them to struggle at New England next week?
I think they'll struggle again. The Vikings played inspired defense today against a divisional rival. But in the weeks to come, outside of their domed home (like in New England next week), I believe they'll continue to struggle.

Eric Allen played cornerback for 14 NFL seasons with the Eagles, Saints and Raiders.

Not even with the league's best record. Not even against the worst Vikings team in nearly two decades.

Daunte Culpepper threw for two touchdowns and ran for another one, and the Vikings intercepted Brett Favre three times Sunday in a 31-21 victory.

"At some point before I retire,'' Favre said, "I'd like to get another win in here.''

The Packers (8-2) have lost nine of 11 at the Metrodome and missed out on a chance to become the earliest team to clinch a division title in a 16-game season.

"We did have opportunities to win,'' coach Mike Sherman said. "I want them to be mad, I want them to be disappointed. But at the same time, be ready for next week.''

Michael Bennett ran for 130 yards on 20 carries for his fourth straight 100-yard game. His 62-yard run just before the 2-minute warning in the fourth quarter set up a 3-yard touchdown run by Moe Williams -- his 10th of the year for the Vikings (3-7).

Minnesota's 31st-ranked defense held Ahman Green to 71 yards and kept Favre -- who was 24-of-42 for 296 yards and two touchdowns -- completely out of rhythm in the fourth quarter.

"We had to keep people in his face and keep the pressure on him,'' defensive end Kenny Mixon said. "If we don't get a sack, but we get an interception, we'll take it.''

Playing a zone almost exclusively, the Vikings took a 24-21 lead on Gary Anderson's 32-yard field goal with 7:16 left and forced two straight three-and-outs before Bennett's run put the game away.

Randy Moss caught six passes for 115 yards and a touchdown, and Culpepper -- adding three more turnovers to his league-high total of 22 -- was 13-for-26 for 217 yards and lost one of his three fumbles.

But after being benched in favor of Todd Bouman for the fourth quarter last week, he responded with several completions and sack-avoiding scrambles in critical situations.

"I feel like I can make a lot of plays in this league for a long time,'' Culpepper said. "I just have to play like myself.''

Down by two scores in the third, Favre threw a 24-yard pass to Bubba Franks on fourth-and-1. After Lance Johnstone's second third-down roughing-the-passer penalty, Favre found Franks again for a 1-yard TD pass that cut the lead to 21-14.

Biekert intercepted Favre twice, but both times Culpepper gave Green Bay the ball right back. Biekert returned his second pick to the Green Bay 5, but Culpepper fumbled the snap on third-and-goal at the 1.

Early in the fourth, Favre completed a third-and-10 pass to Donald Driver, whose catch and run turned into an 84-yard TD that tied the game at 21.

The game began ominously for the Packers, as it has so many times for them in Minnesota over the last decade.

Last season, Green Bay came with a 4-1 record and fell behind 20-0 at halftime. Sure enough, Minnesota went up 14-0 barely eight minutes into this game and made 10 first downs to Green Bay's one in the first quarter.

Working without a huddle, Culpepper threw TD passes, a 29-yarder to Moss and an 18-yarder to D'Wayne Bates, on the Vikings' first two drives.

"It got us in a rhythm,'' Culpepper said. "The defense couldn't sub in and out and couldn't disguise very well.''

Daunte Culpepper

Daunte Culpepper is one of only four players from the '99 draft to sign a contract extension.

Late in the first half, the Packers drove 63 yards to pull to 14-7 on Green's 1-yard touchdown run. Thirty of those yards came on penalties.

Minnesota took the momentum back in the third quarter with an 81-yard drive, 28 coming on a pass interference penalty on Williams. Culpepper scored on a rollout, his fifth rushing TD of the season, to make it 21-7.

By changing quarterbacks last week, Vikings coach Mike Tice wanted his starter to step back and clear his head.

"That was the intention,'' coach Mike Tice said. "I think it's a huge game for Daunte's confidence.''

And also for the Vikings, whose first season with Tice has been rather rough.

"This doesn't cure anything,'' Tice said. "We're still a 3-7 football team.''

But as always in this rivalry, records really don't matter much.

"Every time I played over here, it's been that type of game,'' Favre said. "We always get their best, and today was no exception.''

Game notes


Packers guard Marco Rivera sprained his right knee in the first quarter and didn't return. ... Moss broke Jerry Rice's record for most yards receiving in his first five seasons with 6,160. ... The teams combined to be penalized 25 times for 223 yards.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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