GREEN BAY, WI – The Green Bay Packers (3-2-1) walked onto Lambeau Field on Monday night with what should have been an easy win.
The San Francisco 49ers (1-5) had other plans. Behind a monstrous first-half performance, the 49ers almost flew out of Wisconsin with a signature victory. Instead, the Packers clawed their way back to a 33-30 win that will leave many asking questions about Green Bay’s playoff hopes.
The 49ers started the game ready to make a statement. After fielding a 65-yard kickoff from Mason Crosby, the 49ers marched from end zone to end zone, thanks to the valiant efforts of quarterback C.J. Beathard. A 3-yard run from Matt Breida gave the 49ers the early 7-0 edge.
The Packers responded right back, giving a one-two punch in the form of a Ty Montgomery rushing touchdown followed by a Crosby 29-yard field goal. Green Bay wasn’t done doling out punishment, however; Aaron Rodgers threw a 9-yard pass to Davonte Adams to give the Packers a 17-7 lead. The 49ers would rebound shortly before the end of the first quarter, as C.J. Beathard threw a 67-yard bomb to Marquise Goodwin to cut the lead to 17-14.
The second quarter was all San Francisco. Despite another field goal from Crosby, the 49ers kept giving the Packers their best. The Beathard-Goodwin tag team scored another touchdown, which then led to a 46-yard field goal from Robbie Gould. At halftime, the 49ers held a 24-20 lead.
Mason Crosby was determined to make up for his horrific performance (1-of-6 FG) last week against the Detroit Lions, and he made good on Monday night. His third field goal of the night brought the Packers within one point (24-23), but the 49ers responded with two consecutive field goals of their own to give them a six-point advantage with 13:08 left in the game.
Enter Aaron Rodgers.
With 1:55 left in the game, Rodgers connected with a 16-yard beauty to Davante Adams to set the Packers up to tie the game at 30. Crosby came in to not only make the kick but then made the game-winning field goal with no time remaining.
While Green Bay walked off the field with the win, there is plenty to be concerned about. Despite throwing for 425 yards and two touchdowns, Aaron Rodgers looked like he was out-performed by C.J. Beathard. Beathard, who wasn’t given much of a chance by a lot of critics, had a very modest performance (16-of-23 for 245 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception) and showed flashes of a quarterback who can at least keep his team in the game. The saving grace for Green Bay was kicker Mason Crosby, who was a perfect 6-for-6 on field goals on Monday night.
The Green Bay defense was also suspect, giving up 174 rushing yards and showing an inability to stop the rush. That doesn’t bode well for them, considering their next opponent: Todd Gurley and the Los Angeles Rams.
The 49ers will take on the Rams this coming Sunday (10/21), while the Packers have nearly two weeks off before they face the Rams on the 28th.