OAKLAND (CBS/AP) — With their playoff berth officially secured, the Green Bay Packers can turn their focus to bigger goals.
Aaron Rodgers threw a touchdown pass and Damarious Randall returned an interception for another score to help the Packers beat the Oakland Raiders 30-20 on Sunday, after Green Bay clinched a franchise-record seventh straight playoff spot.
The Packers (10-4) clinched a spot in the postseason in the first quarter when the New York Giants lost to Carolina. But the Packers still have their eyes set on a division title and they remained one game ahead of Minnesota in the NFC North.
Derek Carr threw two early interceptions to put Oakland (6-8) in a hole but then had a pair of touchdown passes to Amari Cooper. It wasn’t enough as the Raiders were eliminated from playoff contention for the 13th straight season.
The Packers built a 14-0 lead with defense and then had to win it behind Rodgers and the offense. Green Bay fell behind 20-17 midway through the third quarter on Carr’s second touchdown pass to Cooper.
The Oakland lead was short-lived as Jeff Janis returned the ensuing kickoff to the 47. Three plays later, former Raider James Jones beat a busted coverage for a 30-yard touchdown catch.
Rodgers engineered a 19-play field goal drive on Green Bay’s next possession and Mason Crosby’s third field goal made it 30-20 with 4:25 left to put the Packers in control.
The highlight for the Raiders was rookie Cooper cracking the 1,000-yard milestone, as he caught six passes for 120 yards. He reached the mark on a 41-yard catch in the third quarter, becoming the first Oakland player with 1,000 yards receiving since Randy Moss in 2005. That was the longest current drought in the NFL.
The rest of the accolades went to the Packers, who got 2 ½ sacks from Julius Peppers to win their third straight game following a midseason slump.
Carr threw two interceptions in the first quarter to set up Green Bay touchdowns. Micah Hyde’s interception set up the Packers at the 18 and John Kuhn ran it in from the 5 for the first score.
Carr’s next pass was high to Seth Roberts and Randall returned it 43 yards for a touchdown that made it 14-0.
The Raiders rallied with a pair of field goals in the second quarter but the Packers still looked to be in control as they drove into scoring range late in the half. But Benson Mayowa forced and recovered a fumble by James Starks at the Oakland 21 with 1:22 to go and Carr connected on a 19-yard TD pass to Amari Cooper four plays later to make it 14-13 at the half.
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