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Here’s how the Green Bay Packers routed the Los Angeles Rams to reach the N.F.C. title game.

  • January 17, 2021

There was not a lot of focus on the Green Bay offensive line in the buildup to the Packers’ divisional playoff game against the Los Angeles Rams on Saturday. The attention was understandably elsewhere: Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers is a top candidate for the N.F.L. Most Valuable Player Award, and the Rams had the league’s leading defensive unit featuring dominant defensive tackle Aaron Donald.

But hobbled by an injury to his ribs, Donald was frequently sidelined Saturday and would make only one tackle in the game. While Rodgers had another patient and skillful postseason performance that included two touchdown passes, it was the Green Bay rushing attack — powered by the authoritative push of its offensive line — that led the way to a steady 32-18 victory.

“They were the stars of the game tonight,” Rodgers said of his offensive linemen. “They dominated.”

The Packers, who rushed for 188 yards and logged 484 total yards, advance to the N.F.C. championship game next weekend at Green Bay’s Lambeau Field against the winner of Sunday’s game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the New Orleans Saints. It will be Rodgers’s fifth N.F.C. title game appearance but his first at home in Green Bay.

Saturday was the first time this season that the Packers had hosted spectators for a home game and roughly 8,500 fans, which included families of team employees, flocked to Lambeau Field. Rodgers said he was hoping for an even bigger crowd next weekend.

Article source: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/16/sports/football/heres-how-the-green-bay-packers-routed-the-los-angeles-rams-to-reach-the-nfc-title-game.html

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