Tie in Titletown
GREEN BAY, Wis. – The Packers' losing streak without Aaron Rodgers is over, though the frustration continues in Titletown.
A tie did little to lift spirits in chilly Green Bay.
Backup quarterback Matt Flynn threw for 218 yards and helped spark a rally from a 16-point deficit early in the fourth quarter to the Minnesota Vikings early in the fourth quarter. But the teams could only muster field goals in overtime and had to settle for a 26-26 draw Sunday.
"It's an empty feeling. You go out there and didn't lose the game," Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. "But you feel like you didn't accomplish what you set out to do."
Same sentiment in the Vikings' locker room, where one player held tightly to a hot cup of coffee to warm up following a game that started with temperatures in the upper teens.
"I view it as a loss, personally. We gave up a 16-point lead in the fourth quarter," defensive end Jared Allen said. "I don't have a sister, but I'm going to say it's like going to prom with your sister."
For a while, the match was full of heart-racing drama.
Mason Crosby hit from 20 yards at 10:28 of the extra period and Blair Walsh connected from 35 with 3:54 left.
Greg Jennings, playing his first game at Lambeau Field as a member of the Vikings (3-8-1), dropped a third-down pass with 2:11 left. The Packers (5-5-1) also stumbled on their next possession.
One last chance for the Vikings went nowhere with 1 second left, and the teams walked off with the first tie in the NFL since the Rams and 49ers ended 24-24 on Nov. 11, 2012.
At least the 77,000-plus frigid fans got to witness a bit of history – this was first game to end in a tie under the new overtime rule instituted last year that continues the extra period if both teams open it with field goals. A touchdown by either team would have ended the game.
Jacksonville and Houston both kicked field goals to open OT in a game on Nov. 18, 2012, then the Texans won it with a touchdown.
"I think to everybody around here, it feels like a loss, for sure," Packers linebacker A.J. Hawk said.