Yet, despite an early 14-0 deficit at one of the NFL's toughest venues, the Packers improved to 5-0 with a rather improbable 25-14 victory.
With a makeshift offensive line settling in, Aaron Rodgers completed 26-of-39 passes for 396 yards and two touchdowns. Twelve receivers caught at least one pass, and Rodgers topped a 110 passer rating for the fifth consecutive game.
It all seemed unthinkable by early in the second quarter against a team that had won 23 consecutive games when leading at halftime.
The Falcons converted three third downs on an 80-yard touchdown drive to open the game, Ryan Grant fumbled for the first time on a running play since 2009, and the Falcons moved 60 easy yards for another touchdown. Less than 18 minutes into the game, the Packers were in a 14-0 hole.
Adding injury to insult, the Packers lost Pro Bowl left tackle Chad Clifton on the ensuing possession to an injured hamstring. While they managed a field goal on the drive after fill-in right tackle Marshall Newhouse replaced Clifton and first-round pick Derek Sherrod was inserted at right tackle, the sight of Clifton being driven off on a cart seemed to loom larger at the time.
Suddenly, Rodgers and the offense found its footing and the Super Bowl champions' defense started to play like the Super Bowl champions' defense.
The Packers cut the margin to 14-6 at halftime, then pulled within 14-9 on Mason Crosby's 56-yard field goal with 5:28 remaining in the third quarter.
Then came the big moment.
After the Falcons went three-and-out, Rodgers pump-faked to Grant and threaded the ball to James Jones against safety Thomas DeCoud. DeCoud missed a diving tackle attempt and Jones ran the final 45 yards for a 70-yard touchdown that put Green Bay in front for the first time at 15-14 with 3:42 to go in the third.
After another Atlanta three-and-out, Rodgers hit Greg Jennings for a 29-yard catch-and-run touchdown, with Jennings leaping in head-long from the 4-yard line.
The Falcons had a third consecutive three-and-out before driving to the Packers' 29 midway through the fourth quarter but Charlie Peprah broke up a pass to Tony Gonzalez and wound up with a juggling interception. Mason Crosby tacked on a 30-yard field goal with 1:10 remaining to make it 25 consecutive points.
The Falcons had 140 yards on their first two drives but finished with 251 against what had been a beleaguered defense. Ryan finished with just 167 against the NFL's 31st-ranked pass defense.
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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.