Green gives offense powerful punch

PONTIAC, Mich. – Ahman Green had the Detroit Lions seeing red at the Silverdome Thursday afternoon.<p> The powerful Packers running back gained 102 yards on 22 carries, caught two passes for 48 yards, and scored two touchdowns to help Green Bay beat the Lions 29-27.<p>

The Packers needed a strong game from Green, who came into the game second in the NFC in rushing behind New Orlean's Ricky Williams, to beat the NCF Central Division rival Lions on the road.

"We want to try and establish the running game in every game," Green said. "If we can get the run going, we can do some many other things." Green got going almost immediately, gaining 20 yards on his first three carries. On the Packers' second possession, he ran 26 yards for a touchdown with 9:37 left to give Green Bay a 7-0 lead. On the run he started up the middle, cut left, and broke a tackle attempt by Todd Lyght to score.

In the third quarter, with the Packers clinging to a 17-13 lead, Green gained eight yards in two carries to help get Green Bay to the Lions 35. On second-and-four from there, Green circled out of the backfield, and caught a pass from quarterback Brett Favre. Green charged up field, cut right and beat safety Kurt Schultz to the end zone. The score gave the Packers some breathing room and a 24-13 lead.

"We prepare for things like that," Green said. "On that play we expect the linebackers to drop back, but this time they just fell off. We can usually get three or four yards from that, but today it was big for us."

In the fourth quarter he gained some tough yards to help set up Ryan Longwell's 39-yard field goal with 7:06 left, which proved to be the game's winning points.

With Green's yards, quarterback Brett Favre played a controlled passing game. He completed 18 of 26 passes – tied for the second-lowest attempts in a game at the Silverdome during his career – 252 yards and two touchdowns. He threw 25 passes in 1996 and 26 in the 1993 playoffs. Both those games, incidently, were Packer wins.

"Ahman makes it so easy for me," Favre said. "You can count on him to be in there and gain the yards. We're so much better for that."

Green rushed for more than 100 yards for the fifth time this season. "My offensive line pays more attention to that than I do," he said. "They get pretty excited for me if I get 100 yards. I just want to be effective. If we can get five or six yards a rush, that keeps the defense honest. Then they can't try to stop one thing."


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