GREEN BAY — Columnist Tom Oates assesses the Green Bay Packers' performance in a 23-14 victory over Minnesota at Lambeau Field on Sunday.


Green Bay’s 18-play, 11-minute drive only netted a field goal, but it ate up most of the fourth quarter and made it a two-score game. The way to beat a cover-2 defense is by running and the Packers rushed for 152 yards.


Morgan Burnett’s two red-zone interceptions were huge plays. After Adrian Peterson’s 48-yard run on the first play of the second half, he had 174 yards on 14 carries. The Packers limited him to 36 yards after that.


Mason Crosby’s 53-yarder late in the first half had no chance, but he struck the ball well in the second half and ended up 3-for-4 on field goals. Randall Cobb lost some yards on punt returns. Is he trying to do too much?


Mike McCarthy compensated for his patchwork offensive line by calling short passes and running plays. When the line showed it could hold up, he expanded the playbook. The double-pass failed to fool the Vikings.

OVERALL • B-minus

It wasn’t pretty, but the short-handed Packers were good early and late in claiming an important division victory. The biggest difference between the teams? Green Bay has Aaron Rodgers, Minnesota has Christian Ponder.

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