Lions deny Aaron Rodgers and Packers a playoff berth as Seahawks earn final bid

GREEN BAY, Wis. – Aaron Rodgers was intercepted by Kerby Joseph on what would have been his final pass of the game, and the Green Bay Packers lost to the Detroit Lions 20-16 on Sunday night, missing the playoffs missed the -off.

After winning four straight games and getting plenty of help from other teams, the Packers controlled their postseason destiny heading into the final game of the NFL regular season. But when the Seattle Seahawks beat the Los Angeles Rams 19-16 in overtime on Sunday, they weren’t playing against the playoff-eliminated Lions.

Instead, Seattle (9-8) clinched the NFC’s final playoff spot and will play San Francisco (13-4) in the opening round. The Packers (8-9) missed the playoffs for the first time in Matt LaFleur’s four seasons as coach.

Rodgers went 17 of 27 for 205 yards with one touchdown in what could be the final appearance at Lambeau Field for the four-time MVP. Although he is under contract for next season, Rodgers, 39, said he does not know if he will continue to play.

Aaron Rodgers put his arm around Randall Cobb’s neck after the Packers’ loss to the Lions on Sunday night.
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During the game, Rodgers became the eighth NFL player to record at least 5,000 career completions.

Jamaal Williams’ second 1-yard touchdown run of the night against his former team gave the Lions (9-8) the lead with 5:55 left. Williams struck out 17 times to tie the Lions single-season record set by Barry Sanders in 1991.

Green Bay managed just 33 points on its next drive before Joseph scooped up a deep pass from Rodgers on third-and-10 with 3 1/2 minutes left.

Detroit held the ball the rest of the game. Facing fourth-and-1 from the Green Bay 15, the Lions attempted a field goal and got a first down on Jared Goff’s 9-yard pass to DJ Chark. Goff also went first with Chark on fourth-and-2 when the Lions marched.

Playing to stretch the season, the Packers often lost their composure.

Linebacker Quay Walker was ejected during the Lions’ drive after shoving a Lions official who was tending to an injured Detroit player. It was the second ejection of the rookie season for the first-round pick.

NFL playoff graphics
NY Post Photo Illustration

Detroit’s Michael Badgley made a field goal to close the first half after Green Bay’s Rasul Douglas was fouled, turning a 48-yarder into a 33-yarder.

Green Bay led 9-6 after a five-goal first half filled with wasted opportunities. Then, on the Packers’ first possession of the second half, Mason Crosby’s 53-yard field goal hit the crossbar and bounced back.

The Lions took the lead for the first time in the game. Goff threw a 43-yard pass to Khalif Raymond to set up Williams’ TD from 1 yard out.

Jamal Williams celebrates scoring a touchdown for the Lions on Sunday night.
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The Packers responded on their next series. Rodgers connected with Christian Watson for a 45-yard completion that set up his 13-yard touchdown pass to Allen Lazard.

On the Packers’ final series, Rodgers threw two completions before Joseph intercepted him for the third time this season. Joseph had two of the Lions’ three picks in a 15-9 win on Nov. 6 and was another potential interception nullified by a penalty on Sunday.

Crosby made field goals of 22, 48 and 49 yards in the first half.


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