Our countdown of the top plays of the Green Bay Packer' 2014 season continues with the fifth-best play of the season. The Packers hosted the red-hot New England Patriots in Week 13 in a nationally showcased game. The highlighted play proved to be the game-winning score against arguably the best cover corner in the league.
The Packers moved the ball well in the first half on New England but were having some trouble finishing drives, settling for three field goals from inside the red zone and getting their only early touchdown on a long pass from Aaron Rodgers to Richard Rodgers.
The Patriots fought back with two scores in the second quarter. With the first half winding down and the Patriots scoring a touchdown to pull within two points on the previous drive, Aaron Rodgers found James Starks for a 28-yard completion to the Packers 47-yard line with under a minute to play. Rodgers then found Jordy Nelson for a quick eight-yard reception (his first of the game) to the Patriots 45-yard line. After a quick incompletion intended again for Nelson on second-and-two, the Packers faced a third-and-two from the Patriots 45-yard line with 30 seconds left in the first half.
Despite being targeted on the previous two plays, Aaron Rodgers wasn't afraid to test his luck a third time against Darrelle Revis. At the start of the play, Jordy Nelson was lined up on the outside. He set up Revis with a jab step and cut inside around the 30-yard line with just enough separation from Darrelle Revis to get open. Rodgers hit Nelson in stride and warp-speed Jordy took care of the rest. The play would be reviewed from the booth to confirm that Nelson crossed the pylon, but the touchdown was upheld and the Packers were on the board once again.
The late score and the ensuing PAT gave the Packers a 23-14 lead at halftime (a lead they never surrendered) and completely swung the momentum of the game back in Green Bay's favor. It appeared Tom Brady and the Patriots were beginning to take control late in the second quarter after the Packers had failed to take advantage of numerous red zone trips, but this play put an end to that surge and fired up the Packers going into the half.
The Packers would end up winning by a final margin of 26-21, Though Nelson wouldn't record another reception the rest of the game, his 45-yard score proved to be the game-winner in a game that was showcased as a potential Super Bowl preview.
Which it should have been...
/turns off the lights, lights a candle, cries himself to sleep
#6: Peppers' pick-six leads to first Lambeau Leap
#7: Randall Cobb's one-handed catch finishes off the Bears
#8: The longest one-yard touchdown ever
#9: Rodgers finds Cobb on one leg
#10: Jordy Nelson completes the comeback