There’s truly nothing like a raised heart rate on Christmas Day. The addition of Packers football to the festivities compounded the stress of in-laws, gift-giving, and awkward dinner conversations to give us all a holiday to remember. Despite 4 interceptions from Baker Mayfield, the Packers escaped a close one at Lambeau, with the final interception clinching the game and shutting the door on the Browns’ comeback attempt. The Browns kicked off the scoring in the first half, going up 6-0 on the back of Nick Chubb. Green Bay then capitalized on a few awful decisions from Mayfield, turning three interceptions into three touchdowns and entering halftime with a 21-12 lead. Despite just three points in the second half, and no points after the 9:00 minute mark in the third quarter, the Packers hung on to win and take a step closer to the ultimate gift, home-field advantage in the NFC Playoff race. Let’s check out the top plays from the big win.
Coming into Saturday’s game, Aaron Rodgers had thrown 442 touchdowns in his career, just one shy of breaking Brett Favre’s Packers record. While it was a foregone conclusion he’d break the record against the Browns, the moment was special. Rodgers told Erin Andrews after the game that it felt like a full-circle moment as the touchdown was thrown to Allen Lazard on a stick concept, a staple of the West Coast offense. After the score put the Packers up 7-6, Brett Favre appeared on the big screen to congratulate Rodgers and commemorate the achievement.
After taking advantage of an interception to gain the lead, the Packers received yet another gift from Baker Mayfield, as Chandon Sullivan picked off a pass to halt the Browns drive at the Packers’ 9-yard line. The Packers ended the quarter with a strike to Allen Lazard down the right sideline. The one-handed snag continued Lazard’s memorable day and set the Packers up in Cleveland territory. They would go on to score on a Davante Adams touchdown to go up 14-6 and seize control of the game.
The Browns responded after Adams’ touchdown, going 70 yards on just six plays, but failing on the 2-point attempt to bring the score to 14-12. While the Packers punted after that drive, they were bailed out yet again, securing the trifecta from Baker with his third interception of the half. Adams capped off that drive to put the Packers up 21-12. After a field goal to open up the 2nd half, the Packers doubled up the Browns, 24-12. The game looked wrapped up and we were all ready to enjoy Christmas without loads of stress. Of course, it never goes that way. The Browns drove down to the Packers’ 8-yard line on 14 plays. A touchdown would make it a one-score game and contribute to me sweating more than any normal human should. Thankfully Rashan Gary and Preston Smith pressured Mayfield and came up with the sack, forcing the Browns to take the field goal.
The Browns were now down just 24-22 after a late touchdown and stood at the 50-yard line. But Baker Mayfield was not yet done playing Santa. Or maybe Rasul Douglas is just The Grinch. Either way, Douglas jumped a pass intended for Donovan Peoples-Jones after a bit of hand fighting back and forth and ended the Browns’ comeback bid for good. The Scrooges of the world will try to complain about Douglas grabbing on this play, but to them, I say bah humbug. We’ll take the win and yet another clutch moment from the revelation that is Rasul Douglas.
That’s it for this week’s top plays! Be sure to vote below on your favorite play and stay tuned for coverage of this weekend’s game against the Vikings, where the Packers can clinch the top seed with some help from the Cardinals against the Cowboys. Happy holidays and have a safe and wonderful New Year!
Which play from the Packers’ Week 16 win over the Browns was the best?
This poll is closed
Rodgers’ Record-Breaking TD
Allen Lazard’s One-Handed Catch
Rashan Gary Sacks Baker Mayfield in the Red Zone
Rasul Douglas Clinches the Win