Week 15 - Minnesota

Five must-win games in a row and five victories in the books.

One more to play in the regular season, next Sunday in Detroit, most likely for the division title and a home play-off game.

The 38-25 win Saturday wasn't as close as the score indicates, with two Minnesota Viking touchdowns (minus a missed 2 point conversion) in the final minutes.

For Christmas Eve Day, the weather in Green Bay was downright mild with sunshine and temperatures in the 30s. Weather wasn't a concern or a factor in the game.

Green Bay marched down the field on their second drive to take a 7 - 0 lead after a scoring pass from Aaron Rodgers to Jordy Nelson.

Minnesota marched down the field, but the Packer defense stiffened before the Vikings could cross the goal line and they had to settle for 3.

Rodgers toot the Pack down the field again, this time finishing with a 20 yard pass to Davante Adams and a 14 - 3 advantage.

The Vikings went down the field again.  Again they couldn't do better than 3 as the Packer defense managed to stop the progress.

Another TD pass from Rodgers to Nelson pushed it to 21 - 6.  Then Sam Bradford connected on a long scoring pass and the Vikings made it 21 - 13 and seemed to grab some momentum with 7:24 left before the break.

The Packers were forced to punt.  It was the first tense moment of the game and there was a sense this was Minnesota's opportunity to get back in the game.

With less than a minute to play in the half, injured star linebacker Clay Matthews showed he was finally feeling better when he stripped Bradford of the ball on a big hit.  The Packers recovered on their own 46.

Two completions (one to the wonderfully named Geronimo Allison) and another to Nelson to reach the Viking 6.

That's when Rodgers showed his balky legs (one with a tender hamstring and the other with a troublesome calf) were better on a nifty run and juke move on this way to a running touchdown and  a 28 - 13 halftime lead.

The Packers added 10 points in the fourth quarter with a Mason Crosby field goal and fourth TD pass for Rodger to Rodgers (Richard, a tight end).

Five weeks ago, Packerland was nothing but gray skies and gloomy forecasts for the beloved home team with a 4 - 6 record and no ticket for the playoffs.

Today, Green Bay stands 9 - 6 with a date in Detroit with the Lions.  Detroit plays in Dallas tonight.

After the game we'll know what's on the line - most likely Green Bay will need to win.  A win gives them the division title and at least one playoff home game.

It's a great Packer Christmas!  Go Pack!