November 23, 2020

Strange Sunday: Packers lose, Colts win

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BARRY WILNER – AP Pro Football Writer – For anyone who thinks the NFL is predictable, ponder this: Green Bay loses and Indianapolis wins.
On the same Sunday.

At about the same time the Colts’ plummet toward ignominy — and 0-16 — ended with a victory over Tennessee, the Packers’ pursuit of perfection also was stopped. Yep, the winless won and the undefeated fell.

The Packers’ 19-game winning streak, second longest in NFL history, was snapped with a 19-14 loss at Kansas City, a team that was routed by 27 points last weekend, then fired its coach. Defending Super Bowl champion Green Bay (13-1) won’t have to put up with questions about an undefeated season any more.

“I personally always viewed the undefeated season as, really, just gravy,” coach Mike McCarthy said. “The goal was to get home-field advantage and win the Super Bowl. That’s what we discussed.”

The Packers already own the NFC North title and still have the edge in the conference, two games ahead of New Orleans and 2 1/2 in front of San Francisco, which hosts Pittsburgh on Monday night. Losing to an AFC opponent, even one that is only 6-8 after this victory and replaced Todd Haley with Romeo Crennel after that debacle at the Jets a week ago, wasn’t particularly damaging. Nonconference games have little effect on postseason tiebreakers.

“I think our goal ultimate goal is to win a Super Bowl. The next step is getting that No. 1 seed in the playoffs,” said quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who had one of his least-productive performances in the last year. Rodgers was 17 of 35 for 235 yards, threw for a touchdown and ran for one. “We’ve got a home playoff game — we’ve got a bye secured.”

McCarthy has said for weeks the Packers will confront 16-0 when they get to 15-0. They won’t be getting there, emulating the 1998 Broncos, who also won 13 in a row and then lost. Those Broncos repeated as NFL champs.

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