Rodgers, Crosby's heroics lift Packers to NFC Championship Game - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Rodgers, Crosby's heroics lift Packers to NFC Championship Game

Posted:
DALLAS (AP) -

Aaron Rodgers threw a 36-yard pass to a toe-dragging Jared Cook on the sideline, and Mason Crosby kicked a 51-yard field goal on the next play as time expired, sending the Packers to the NFC championship game with their eighth straight win while thwarting a Dallas rally in a 34-31 victory in the divisional round of the playoffs Sunday.

The throw on the run from Rodgers to Cook came on third-and-20 with 12 seconds left, and after the Cowboys tied the score twice in the final 4:08 after trailing by 18 in the first half and by 15 to start the fourth quarter.

Dallas' rally was led by rookie sensations Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott in their playoff debuts, and the first two career postseason touchdown catches for star receiver Dez Bryant along with the first for 14th-year tight end Jason Witten.

Crosby's winner was the third field goal of more than 50 yards in the final 1:33 -- two from Crosby and one from Dallas' Dan Bailey. And Crosby had to make the winner twice after Dallas coach Jason Garrett called timeout before the first attempt.

Rodgers, who sparked last week's wild-card win over the New York Giants with another Hail Mary before halftime, is headed to an MVP showdown with Atlanta's Matt Ryan next Sunday. It will be Rodgers' third NFC title game -- all on the road for Green Bay (12-6).

Cook, who had six catches for a team-leading 104 yards, kept both feet inbounds with a knee just above the ground out of bounds on the decisive play. The play was confirmed on review.

Green Bay's win was the first by a road team after 12 straight home victories in the playoffs dating to last season. The Packers were the previous road team to win -- over Washington in last season's wild-card round.

Mike McCarthy passed Vince Lombardi and Mike Holmgren on Green Bay's coaching victory list with his 10th postseason win.

Powered by Frankly