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Cheese Curds, 12/10: Packers fight through adversity to get Philbin a big win

The Packers could have rolled over on Sunday, but they rallied to put in one of their most complete performances of the year.

NFL: Atlanta Falcons at Green Bay Packers Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

The Green Bay Packers went into kickoff on Sunday with an interim head coach, three starting offensive linemen inactive, and playing an opponent that has dominated them over the past few years, albeit a team that is arguably even more disappointing than the Packers this season.

For the first time since before the bye week, the Packers showed resilience in the face of adversity. A long opening drive by the Atlanta Falcons — ending in a touchdown to Julio Jones — put the Packers in an early hole. But the offense cleaned up the third-down issues that have been plaguing it all season, the defense figured out how to force some takeaways, and the Packers dominated the game for about 50 minutes en route to a 34-20 victory.

For Philbin, who returned to Green Bay this year after several years away from the team, it must have been exciting, and it certainly was a positive way to cap off an emotional week following Mike McCarthy’s firing.

Here’s a look back at Sunday’s win.

‘A lot of emotion’ in Packers’ victory for Philbin |
The Packers overcame starting three backups on the offensive line to have one of their most complete performances of the year.

Rookie cornerback Jaire Alexander rewards Packers for their trust |
Mike Pettine tasked Alexander with covering Julio Jones all day, often one-on-one, and even though Jones crossed over the 100-yard mark with two scores, the rookie’s competitiveness and willingness to challenge the much bigger Jones at the line of scrimmage largely paid off.

Bashaud Breeland finally gets chance to show his ‘true talent’ |
The Packers hadn't forced a turnover in almost three games coming into Sunday, so to get two -- both from Breeland -- was a huge boost for the defense's confidence. Meanwhile, the team should start talking to Breeland right away to gauge his interest in a contract extension.

Packers interim coach Joe Philbin jokes about losing two early challenges | Packers Wire
That was a pretty good line from Philbin about getting his challenges out on the opening drive of the game: "I had enough big decisions to make during the course of the day, I didn't want to have to make any more. Plus the flag didn't fit very good in my pocket."

Winston Moss says tweet was not aimed at Aaron Rodgers or team brass | ESPN
Moss was on the FOX pregame show Sunday and tried to clarify what he meant in his tweet, saying that he was talking to the fans rather than anyone inside the organization. Still, he does not regret the comment at all, regardless of whether it played a role in his dismissal.

These dolphins enjoy watching SpongeBob SquarePants—and it could be good for them | Science | AAAS
It's in Science Magazine, so it's got to be legit.