It was a "giant" sized playoff clincher for the Packers today before 70,429 at Lambeau Field. Green Bay dominated the Seattle Seahawks 48-10 and got help from the Carolina Panthers who embarrased the Giants in New York 41-9 allowing the Pack to secure the 25 playoff berth in franchise history. The sun was shining with a kickoff temperature of 18 degrees in the home finale and it took a defensive play to jump start the Packers. A.J. Hawk intercepted a horribly thrown ball by Matt Hasselbeck on Seattle's first series and he returned the ball to the Seahawk 35. It took only four plays to score, Brandon Jackson weaved his way through a crowd with a 13 yard screen pass and the 7-0 nothing. Two series later, it was a double milestone throw from Rodgers, floating a perfect 40 yard strike to Greg Jennings. On the play, Jennings went over a thousand yards receiving and Rodgers became the first NFL quarterback in history to top 4000 passing yards in each of his first two seasons as a starter. The same pair connected on the next snap for 24 yards and Ryan Grant finished off the drive with a three yard scoring run making it 14-0 after the first period. Seattle started to move but on third and 6 from the 8, Hasselbeck was intercepted a second time, by safety Atari Bigby in the end zone. When the Packers were stopped, Seattle put together a 53 yard drive in 9 plays but had to settle for three as Johnny Jolly blasted Julius Jones for a loss of 2 on a third and 2 play from the Packers 7. Olindo Mare booted through a 28 yard field goal. Green Bay had an immediate answer as Grant broke through a hole over left guard, made safety Deon Grant miss downfield and raced 56 yards for a touchdown. The lead reached 24-3 at the half as Jermichael Finley was stopped a yard short of the end zone on third and goal from the 15. An apparent TD pass to Spencer Havner was wiped out as Havner was called for offensive pass interference but Mason Crosby knocked through a 29 yard field goal on the half's final play. The interception festival continued in the third quarter as nickel back Jarrett Bush swiped his first career pick on the opening series. Green Bay needed 7 plays to drive the 47 yards for a score and Jackson broke loose around right end for a 6 yard touchdown run. Three plays later, Hasselbeck was intercepted for a 4th time, the second for Bigby on a downfield throw. Rodgers finished his afternoon by hitting Jermichael Finley on a 38 yard pass to the 4 and Jackson bulled over for his third TD of the day making it 38-3. The Packers defense denied the Seahawks once more with a 4th and 10 stop at the Packers 22 as Brandon Chillar recored one of three sacks on the day. Matt Flynn took over at quarterback and directed a 37 yard drive that ended when Crosby made good on a 52 yard field goal that ended his 6 week slump to the roar of his teammates and the Packer faithful. Ahman Green capped the scoring with a 6 yard bullish TD run with 6:39 to play putting Green Bay up by 45 points. The Seahawks got a consolation touchdown as Hasselbeck hit tight end John Carlson on a 16 yard pass with 4:15 remaining.
The numbers were as dominant as the score, Green Bay piled up 417 yards of offense and held Seattle to 291, 110 yards of that came when the game was well in hand. Rodgers completed only 12 of 23 passes but for 237 yards with one score, giving him 29 TD's on the season with only 7 picks. Greg Jennings caught a game high 4 balls for 111 yards. On the ground, the Packers averaged 4.8 yards a carry with five rushing touchdowns, the most in a single game since 1988. Grant had 16 carries for 97 yards, pushing his season total over 1200, becomming only the third back in Green Bay history to have 2 straight seasons above that number. The 4 takeaways on defense, all via interceptions, gives the Packers 27 picks on the year and a giveaway-takeaway ratio of +22, best in the league.
The Packers close out the season at Arizona next Sunday, the Cardinals have already locked up the number 4 seed in the NFC and if the Packers hang on to their number five position, could return to Phoenix to open the post-season the following week. That hasn't happend since the Packers closed with Detroit in 1993 (a 30-20 loss) and scored a 28-24 wild card victory over the Lions in the Pontiac Silverdome 6 days later.