It was a night to remember for Aaron Rodgers at Lambeau Field tonight. The Green Bay Packers quarterback turned in one of the best statistical performances of his career against the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday Night, throwing for five touchdowns and over 300 yards in a big win that moved the Packers to 3-0 on the season. The Packers won 38-28 on the strength of Rodgers' huge game, and the final score made it seem closer than it actually was; the teams were separated by three scores for most of the game.
Three of Rodgers' scores went to Randall Cobb, and each of those scoring plays used the same design as the fifth-year receiver totaled seven catches total for 91 yards. James Jones added seven receptions for 139 yards and a score of his own, while Ty Montgomery was the recipient of Rodgers' first score of the day and the first of the rookie's young NFL career.
Here's the recap of tonight's game.
The Packers got off to a pretty abysmal start. On the opening kickoff, Ty Montgomery got up favoring his left leg, then the Packers went three and out on a series that featured Davante Adams limping significantly on his injured ankle. Thankfully, the defense forced a quick three and out of their own to get Aaron Rodgers and company the ball back.
The Packers then went to work. Buoyed by an end-around to Randall Cobb, they picked up first downs on a run by Starks, a screen to James Jones, and a shovel pass to Eddie Lacy. Then, it was Montgomery, on his first snap back on the field, who found a soft spot and caught a short pass from Rodgers and dove into the end zone for his first career touchdown and Lambeau Leap.
On the ensuing kickoff, the Chiefs reached midfield, but the offense stalled quickly. Mike Diesel blew his blockers off the line of scrimmage and tackled Jamaal Charles for a three-yard loss, and a great pressure by Clay Matthews on third down forced a punt.
Aaron Rodgers' slick tricks worked on the next series, as he was able to catch the Chiefs with 12 men on the field to get a first down on a third and short. James Starks ran for a first down then, and picked up 19 on a nifty screen on which he shook a potential tackler in the backfield. Rodgers then found Randall Cobb in the right flat, and Cobb powered through a pair of tacklers to stretch the ball over the goal line and extend the lead to 14-0.
A great play by Nate Palmer on a screen to Jamaal Charles and a sack by newly-signed linebacker Joe Thomas on third down forced yet another three-and-out. The Packers couldn't convert a third down near midfield, but the Packers went for it on fourth and five from the 39-yard line. Rodgers was under heavy pressure, though, and his pass fell incomplete.
The Chiefs finally started moving the ball on the ensuing series. Travis Kelce caught a deep pass up the sideline and got a few extra yards on a dumb personal foul penalty. Jamaal Charles converted from 9 yards out, and the Chiefs were back within one score at 14-7.
Randall Cobb then stepped up with a big gain down the sideline, and Eddie Lacy rumbled, leaving a trail of tacklers in his wake. Just outside the red zone, Aaron Rodgers was pressured and sacked, fumbling the football, but although the Chiefs recovered, he was bailed out by an illegal contact penalty in the end zone. A Cobb touchdown was wiped out by a pass interference call on Montgomery, and Rodgers was sacked on third down, setting up a 45-yard field goal attempt for Mason Crosby. He nailed it to extend the lead back to ten points at 17-7.
After another quick three-and-out, Rodgers got the ball back, but another penalty by Ty Montgomery pushed the drive back. Despite the third-and-ten resulting from that, Rodgers delivered a dart to Cobb over the middle for a first down at the Chiefs' 41. Rodgers eventually drew the Chiefs offsides with a hard count and found an open James Jones in the front corner of the end zone for his fourth (!) touchdown of the early season.
The Chiefs and Packers traded three-and-outs early, with Aaron Rodgers nearly throwing an interception, and the Chiefs had a second one after back-to-back sacks by Jayrone Elliott and Mike Daniels. They were able to pin the Packers back at the two-yard line though after a great punt by Dustin Colquitt.
Rodgers found Cobb from his own end zone, though, and Cobb picked up a big gain before being tackled at the 34. Unfortunately, that drive stalled and the Packers had to punt. Penalties pushed the Chiefs back inside their own five, but Alex Smith threw a pick straight to Sam shields, who returned it to the four-yard line. The next play made it a 31-7 game, as Rodgers found Cobb on a quick screen in the flat and he cut it upfield for an easy touchdown.
The Chiefs then went to the short passing game after that. It was almost all swing passes to Jamaal Charles and Travis Kelce before Smith found Jeremy Maclin over the middle for a 32-yard gain to the seven. Smith then found Maclin again over the middle for a touchdown, breaking the Chiefs' oft-mentioned streak of not throwing a touchdown pass to a wide receiver, and pulling Kansas City back to within three scores at 31-14.
Rodgers struck again with yet another hard count. Drawing another offsides penalty, he hit James Jones for a big 52-yard gain, then found Cobb for his third touchdown of the game, all on the exact same play.
The Chiefs bounced back with a score of their own. After Damarious Randall got burned for 61 yards by Maclin, Charles punched in a score from four yards out and the Chiefs added a two-point conversion to make it 38-22.
The final ten minutes of the game were taken up by an 18-play drive by the Chiefs, as they moved the ball slowly and methodically. At one point, they got the benefit of a questionable spot on fourth and 17 that gave them a first down, and eventually Jamaal Charles scored with 1:25 left to pull the team within 10. A two-point conversion attempt went incomplete, however, and the score remained 38-28.
Micah Hyde recovered the onside kick on the next kickoff, and Rodgers and company ran out most of the remaining game clock before punting the ball away with 19 seconds left. The Packers closed out the game with a sack and finished off the 38-28 win.