Jan. 16 (UPI) — Aaron Rodgers threw two touchdowns and also ran for a score as the top-seeded Green Bay Packers earned a 32-18 win over the Los Angeles Rams on Saturday at Lambeau Field in the NFC divisional round.
With the victory, the Packers reached the NFC Championship Game for the fourth time in the past seven seasons. It will be Green Bay’s first time hosting the NFC title game at Lambeau Field since doing so in the 2007-08 season, when the team fell to the New York Giants 23-20 in overtime.
The Packers won the Super Bowl in the 2010-11 season as the No. 6 seed in the NFC, and they lost at Seattle, Atlanta and San Francisco in their last three conference championship game appearances.
“It’s special. There’s absolutely nothing like it,” Rodgers said of playing in front of fans at Lambeau Field. “We have really missed that part of this experience. To run out of the tunnel tonight with fans was unbelievable. It’s hard to explain how much the presence means on the field and just having that energy from the crowd.”
The Packers (14-3) jumped out to a 16-3 lead with under four minutes left in the second quarter and entered halftime with a 19-10 advantage. Packers running back Aaron Jones ran for a 1-yard touchdown near the start of the third frame to boost Green Bay’s lead to 25-10.
Rams rookie tailback Cam Akers scored from seven yards out late in the third to cut their deficit to 25-18, but Los Angeles was unable to put together another scoring drive. Rodgers tossed a 58-yard bomb to receiver Allen Lazard midway through the final quarter to clinch the win.
Rodgers completed 23 of 36 passes for 296 yards and two touchdowns. Jones ran for 99 yards and one score on 14 carries.
Rams quarterback Jared Goff was 21 of 27 for 174 yards and a touchdown less than three weeks after undergoing thumb surgery on his throwing hand. Akers recorded 90 rushing yards and a touchdown on 18 rushes.
The Rams (11-7) haven’t advanced past the divisional round of the playoffs since the 2018-19 campaign, when they lost to the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LIII.
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The Cleveland Browns won the AFC Wild Card game against the Pittsburgh Steelers 48-37 in a nearly empty Heinz Field in Pittsburgh on Sunday. Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI | License Photo