NFC Championship - The End

This cap "helped" win 8 straight.
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Down 7 - 0 after Atlanta's first possession.

No need to panic, our turn with the ball.  Aaron drives the team downfield before stalling inside the 30, bring on Mason Crosby for the field goal.

Wide right.

OK, not good, but we'll be OK.  Let's go get 'em, defense.

Falcons held to 3, 10 - 0 Atlanta leads.

Packers march downfield crisply.  Hand-off to Aaron Ripkowski, who's been pretty sure-handed all year.  Atlanta punches the ball loose, recovers in the end zone.  Falcons take it 80 yards and punches it across the Green Bay goal line.  14 - 0 swing and the Pack drops behind 17 - 0.

Alright, guys - we can still do this.  Let's get a touchdown before the half, then we'll get the ball and can cut the lead to 3!

Green Bay stalls.  Atlanta scores.  24 - 0 at intermission.

Can my oldest Packer hat change things up?
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I climb the stairs at the break, go in to look at the wall of Packer hats and choose a new one to change the mojo.

  Let's get it together, guys!  It's a new game.  We need a touchdown and a defensive hold to climb back into the game.  We can do this.  Go Pack, Go!!

31 - 0.  Finally, Green Bay gets a touchdown in the third quarter.  31 - 7.

OK, that's a start.  Let's find a way to get the ball back, make them go three and out.  Anything. COME ON PACKERS!

Atlanta answers, leads 37 - 7.

Oh boy, time's a wasting.  Come on, Pack!  

A long Packer drive with a couple runs by Rodgers and a fourth down conversion before a quick pass to Jordy Nelson and a 2 point conversion by Ripkowski makes it 37 - 15.

Onside kick is caught and returned to the Packer 33.

Alright defense, get that ball! NOW!!

End of 3, Atlanta's up 22 and sharpening its dagger.

Run to the corner of the end zone, Falcons post 44, lead by 29.

It's a sad and very disappointing end of an exciting run to and into the play-offs which came up two games short of running the table the way the team and its fans wanted.

Atlanta was the better team yesterday.  Combined with Green Bay miscues which weren't happening the last eight games and there wasn't a way for Aaron Rodgers and the Packers to reach the Super Bowl.

The players hurt coming into the game all got on the field, providing hope before the game.  The fog kept the Packer's plane on the ground Saturday, forcing the team to bus to Milwaukee for a ride to Atlanta, getting in late.  Rodgers, Crosby, and others were hit by the flu bug during the week before the game.

Then the missed kick; fumble inside the Red Zone; Falcon fumble Jake Ryan can't corral; a couple dropped potential interceptions.

Green Bay kept after it.  Even with virtually no chance, Rodgers ran strong up-field for a 30 yard gain and a first down trying to rally the troops.  This team never quit.

They weren't good enough.  Not on Sunday.  The way Atlanta played, even on their best day, the Packers would have had a tough time wining.

The season started with great promise and predictions we'd reach the Super Bowl.  Ten games in we had lost two more times than we had won.  It was a thrilling ride from there on out until it came to a bitter end at the end of the long march.

Atlanta 44 Green Bay 21.

Hats off to the Falcons and good luck in the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots.

For the Pack - we need to get some guys back, get some new guys through the draft, come back healthier and better - and get after it again this fall.