Final

Jaguars 28

(8-6, 4-3 away)

Packers 25

(8-6, 4-4 home)

4:15 PM ET, December 19, 2004

 

1 2 3 4 T
JAX 7 7 7 728
GB 0 10 7 825

Favre's four turnovers doom Packers

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) -- Who knew the Jacksonville Jaguars were a cold-weather team?

Byron Leftwich threw two touchdown passes, Fred Taylor rushed for 165 yards and a touchdown and Rashean Mathis picked off Brett Favre twice, helping the Jaguars (8-6) stay in the thick of the AFC playoff race with a 28-25 victory over the Green Bay Packers on Sunday.

Allen's Analysis
Eric Allen Jags-Packers: Is today an indicator that the Jags need to focus on the run (Taylor ran for 165)? The past five or six years the Jaguars have been able to consistently count on Taylor and WR Jimmy Smith to get the job done. They should maintain their offensive balance and keep allowing Taylor to make opposing teams respect the running game. I don't see the Jags going away from that because they realize they can take over a game with their running game. Taylor had a great game today and made some big runs to lead his team to victory.

Eric Allen played cornerback for 14 NFL seasons with the Eagles, Saints and Raiders. He's a regular contributor to Insider.

Temperatures were in the single digits and the wind chill was well below zero.

"A team that plays in Florida in the 80s and 70s, you just can't condition your body for the temperatures you are going to feel," Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio said. "But you can condition your mind and I felt we were ready from that standpoint."

Said Packers coach Mike Sherman: "They have the talent to play in any conditions."

Jaguars safety Donovin Darius was ejected for a helmet-stripping, clothesline hit that sent wide receiver Robert Ferguson to the hospital with 4:41 remaining. Ferguson temporarily lost feeling in his legs, but regained feeling in an ambulance.

He was diagnosed with a sprained neck, and team trainer Pepper Burruss said Ferguson had movement and sensation in his arms and legs Sunday night. Ferguson was admitted to Bellin Hospital for observation overnight.

For once, it was the Packers who played as if they couldn't wait to get inside.

Favre turned over the ball four times and fell to 31-4 at home after Dec. 1, losing for just the second time in 40 cold-weather games at home.

Nevertheless, the Packers (8-6) became the ninth team in NFL history to reach the playoffs after a 1-4 start. They clinched before kickoff because Chicago, Dallas, Carolina and New York all lost in the run-of-the-mill NFC.

"We're in the playoffs?" Packers lineman Mark Tauscher responded incredulously. "I'll take your word for it."

The Packers fell into a tie with Minnesota atop the NFC North after the Vikings edged Detroit 28-27 Sunday. They travel to Minneapolis for a Christmas Eve matinee that will decide the division.

"Our goal is to win the division and that is still out there," Sherman said.

Favre hit Antonio Chatman with a 6-yard touchdown throw and found Donald Driver for the 2-point conversion to pull Green Bay to 28-25 with 1:08 left. But Jacksonville safety Nick Sorensen recovered the onside kick and the Jaguars handed Green Bay its fourth loss at Lambeau Field this season.

Leftwich was battered all afternoon, bruising his left wrist in the second quarter on a hit by Cullen Jenkins, but he hung in to guide the Jaguars to a season-high points total. Favre also was hurt in the second quarter and played with tape on his left wrist and thumb after jamming it into the ground.

The drive ended when safety Deon Grant stripped the ball away from Driver in the end zone.

Driver's 32-yard catch gave Green Bay a 17-14 lead in the third quarter, but Taylor put the Jaguars ahead for good 90 seconds later with a 32-yard run.

Then Mathis intercepted in the end zone on first-and-goal from the 3, "the easiest pick I ever had," Mathis said.

"I hope I never do that again," Favre said.

Then, Del Rio went on fourth-and-goal from the 1 and rookie Greg Jones rewarded the risk with a touchdown that gave Jacksonville a 28-17 lead with 10 minutes left.

"We were ready for the cold mentally," Del Rio said. "And we did not let the elements dictate how we played."

The Packers sure did.

It was typical Green Bay winter weather: 12 degrees at kickoff with a wind chill of minus-3. As Leftwich said, "This was beyond cold."

But it was the Packers who looked completely out of their element.

Green Bay committed 12 penalties for 101 yards, Ryan Longwell's streak of 45 straight field goals inside 40 yards ended and Ahman Green fumbled at the Jaguars 10, one of four Packers turnovers inside the Jacksonville 23.

"They beat us in supposedly our elements," Tauscher said. "The AFC is just a better conference this year."

About the only thing that went right for the Packers was safety Darren Sharper's heads-up touchdown.

Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila pummeled Leftwich and the ball squirted loose for what appeared to be an incompletion. While linebackers Hannibal Navies and Nick Barnett walked away from the ball, Jacksonville guard Vince Manuwai nonchalantly picked it up. Sharper came rushing in, poked it away, scooped it up and scampered 15 yards into the end zone.

Game notes


Green posted his fifth straight 1,000-yard season, tying Jim Taylor's franchise record. ... Longwell became one of three players to reach 100 points in each of his first eight NFL seasons. ... Sharper has scored six TDs in his career, one shy of Herb Adderley's team record. ... The Packers hadn't lost a home finale since Favre's arrival in 1992. ... Jacksonville was the last team to make a regular season visit to Green Bay.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
Jacksonville
Green Bay
1st Downs1926
3rd down efficiency
3-116-11
4th down efficiency
1-10-0
Total Yards312444
Yards per play5.56.6
Total Drives12
Passing115350
Comp-Att
9-2030-44
Yards per pass
5.88.0
Interceptions thrown
03
Sacks-Yards Lost
1-62-17
Rushing19794
Rushing Attempts
3621
Yards per rush
5.54.5
Penalties7-8512-101
Turnovers25
Fumbles lost
22
Interceptions thrown
03
Possession30:4229:18

Passing Leaders

JAXC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Leftwich9/201216.1201-6
GBC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Favre30/443678.3232-17

Rushing Leaders

JAXCARYDSAVGTDLG
Taylor221657.5146
Jones9202.217
GBCARYDSAVGTDLG
Green17945.5027
Davenport210.502

Receiving Leaders

JAXRECYDSAVGTDLG
Smith48721.8231
Williams11111.0011
GBRECYDSAVGTDLG
Walker1115213.8023
Driver47418.5132

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERJAXGB
TD2:04JIMMY SMITH 31 YD PASS FROM BYRON LEFTWICH (JOSH SCOBEE KICK)
Drive: 3 plays, 68 yds, 2:04
70
SECOND QUARTERJAXGB
FG1:25RYAN LONGWELL 35 YD
Drive: 7 plays, 36 yds, 3:02
73
TD10:16DARREN SHARPER 15 YD FUMBLE RETURN (RYAN LONGWELL KICK) 710
TD12:32JIMMY SMITH 16 YD PASS FROM BYRON LEFTWICH (JOSH SCOBEE KICK)
Drive: 4 plays, 68 yds, 2:16
1410
THIRD QUARTERJAXGB
TD3:16DONALD DRIVER 32 YD PASS FROM BRETT FAVRE (RYAN LONGWELL KICK)
Drive: 6 plays, 76 yds, 3:16
1417
TD4:45FRED TAYLOR 37 YD RUN (JOSH SCOBEE KICK)
Drive: 4 plays, 64 yds, 1:29
2117
FOURTH QUARTERJAXGB
TD5:11GREG JONES 1 YD RUN (JOSH SCOBEE KICK)
Drive: 10 plays, 58 yds, 5:51
2817
TD13:52ANTONIO CHATMAN 7 YD PASS FROM BRETT FAVRE (BRETT FAVRE PASS TO DONALD DRIVER FOR TWO-POINT CONVERSION)
Drive: 7 plays, 67 yds, 1:24
2825