In the aftermath of clinching a division title with a win over the Minnesota Vikings on Monday night, the Green Bay Packers handed out T-shirts that read: "The North is not enough." Indeed, NFC North supremacy is not the goal for the Packers, who can clinch a first-round bye and have a chance at the top seed when they visit the Detroit Lions on Sunday.
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Green Bay squeezed out a 23-22 win over Detroit in Week 6, but the Lions are down to their third-string quarterback and mired in an eight-game losing streak. A victory gives the Packers a bye in the first round and they also have a chance to snag home-field advantage throughout the playoffs if San Francisco loses at Seattle. "Everything's right there in front of us. The one thing I'll say is you can never take any game for granted in this league," first-year coach Matt LaFleur said. "We battled (Detroit) here until the final whistle in Lambeau, so we'll have our work cut out for us." The Lions have dropped 11 of 12 since a 2-0-1 start to the season and have not scored more than 20 points in each of their last five games.
TV: 1 p.m. ET, FOX. LINE: Packers -12.5 O/U: 43.5
ABOUT THE PACKERS (12-3): Aaron Rodgers has gone seven straight games without throwing for more than 243 yards and had just 216 without a touchdown in Monday night's 23-10 victory over Minnesota, leaving him 321 yards shy of 4,000. "There were years when I was throwing it 600 times damn near every year, and that's what we needed to do to win," said Rodgers, who connected with wideout Davante Adams 13 times for 116 yards last week. "This year, we've done it a different way." That different way has included a featured role for Aaron Jones, who rushed for 154 yards and two scores last week to boost his NFL-leading touchdown total to 19. Linebacker Za'Darius Smith leads a defense that has allowed 51 points in a four-game winning streak.
ABOUT THE LIONS (3-11-1): The wheels have come off for Detroit since starting quarterback Matthew Stafford went down with a back injury in Week 9 and neither Jeff Driskel nor David Blough has been able to halt the team's slide. Blough has completed only 56.5 percent of his passes with four touchdowns and five interceptions in four games, but the offense could get a boost from running back Kerryon Johnson, who rushed for 42 yards on 10 carries in last week's 27-17 loss at Denver after missing eight games due to a torn meniscus. Kenny Golladay is one of three wideouts with at least 60 receptions and leads the team with 1,118 yards and 11 touchdowns. The Lions are dreadful against the pass, ranking last at 282.6 yards per game.
1. Rodgers has 20 touchdowns and three interceptions in nine games at Detroit.
2. Golladay is bidding to become the first Detroit WR to lead the NFL in receiving touchdowns since Calvin Johnson in 2008.
3. Smith collected a career-high 3.5 sacks last week to boost his season total to a team-best 13.5.
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