The 2012Green Bay Packersseason was the franchise's 93rd season in the National Football League, the 94th overall and the seventh under head coach Mike McCarthy. The Packers won the NFC North division title for the second year in a row with an 11–5 record. The Packers lost in the divisional round of the playoffs to the San Francisco 49ers by the score of 45-31, finishing with a postseason record of 1-1. The Packers offense finished the season fifth in points and eleventh in yards per game. The defense finished eleventh in points allowed and twenty-second in yards allowed per game.
After finishing last season with a league best 15–1 record, the Green Bay Packers began their 2012 campaign against the San Francisco 49ers who finished second to the Packers in the NFC with a 13–3 record. San Francisco delivered the game's opening punch in the first quarter as David Akers converted a 40-yard field goal. The 49ers further extended their lead when veteran WR Randy Moss caught a 17-yard pass in the middle of the end zone from Alex Smith in the 2nd quarter. The Packers scored their first points of the season when Aaron Rodgers connected with TE Jermichael Finley in the center of the endzone on a 1-yard pass. Rodgers and the Packers offense struggled to move the ball and David Akers added two more field goals for the 49ers including a long distance 63-yard field goal that hit the cross bar and bounced through as the 1st half came to an end. The Packers went into the locker room down 16–7. The 49ers continued their scoring in the third quarter with Vernon Davis hauling in a 4-yard pass in the end zone from Alex Smith to further extend the 49ers lead to 23–7. The Packers' managed to chip into the 49ers lead when WR Randall Cobb returned a punt 75 yards for a touchdown. Rodgers completed a pass to Jordy Nelson for the 2-point conversion to bring the lead down to a more manageable 8-point lead. However, Rodgers threw a costly interception on the Packers next offensive possession which set up the 49ers with great field position. Following the INT, RB Frank Gore scored a touchdown on a 23-yard scamper into the endzone down the right sideline. The Packers drove down and Rodgers completed a 10-yard touchdown pass to James Jones to bring the Packers within 8 points for the second time with a little over 6 minutes remaining in the game. The Packers forced the 49ers to punt with 3:45 remaining on the clock but hope expired on a come from behind victory when Rodgers failed to complete an attempted pass to Jordy Nelson on 4th and 10. The 49ers regained possession and ran out the game clock. With the loss, Green Bay began their season 0–1 matching the Packers regular season losses for all of the 2011 season. Also, this game ended their streak of 13 consecutive regular season victories at Lambeau Field.
With the controversial loss, the Packers fell to 1–2. Also, QB Aaron Rodgers would be held without a touchdown for the first time since the teams' 9–0 shutout against the Jets during the 2010 season. The team was also one of six 2011 playoff teams to be under .500 after their first three games.
In spite of the surprising loss to the Seahawks, the Packers returned home for a game against the Saints. The Saints tried to avenge their losing in Green Bay last season. However, the Packers would win this game and improve to 2–2 while the Saints dropped to 0–4.
The Packers went to Indianapolis for a game against the Colts. Despite the fact that the team was up 21–3 at halftime, the Colts erased the lead in the 2nd half and won the game 30–27. This dropped the Packers' record to 2–3 on the season, 0–1 against the AFC South, and 0–4 all-time in Indianapolis.
With the victory over the previously undefeated Texans, the Packers improved their season to 3–3 and 5–0 all-time in the city of Houston. Aaron Rodgers tied the franchise record with 6 touchdown passes. Before the game the Texans defense only allowed 6 touchdowns all season.
With their third consecutive win, the Packers improved to 5–3, dropping to the Jacksonville Jaguars to 1–1 at Lambeau Field. The Kansas City Chiefs and Houston Texans are now the only two remaining teams which have never lost at Lambeau, sitting at 3–0 and 1–0, respectively.
GB – James Jones 28 Yard TD Pass from Aaron Rodgers, (Mason Crosby XP), (GB 21–7)
GB – Mason Crosby 33 Yard FG, (GB 24–7)
ARI – Larry Fitzgerald 31 Yard TD Pass from John Skelton, (Jay Feely XP), (GB 24–14)
ARI – Jay Feely 20 Yard FG, (GB 24–17)
GB – Tom Crabtree 72 Yard TD Pass from Aaron Rodgers, (Mason Crosby XP), (GB 31–17)
ARI – John Skelton – 23/46, 306 Yards, TD, INT
GB – Aaron Rodgers – 14/30, 218 Yards, 4 TD, INT
ARI – LaRod Stephens-Howling – 17 Rushes, 51 Yards, TD
GB – James Starks – 17 Rushes, 61 Yards
ARI – Andre Roberts – 4 Receptions, 86 Yards
GB – Tom Crabtree – Reception, 72 Yards, TD
ARI – Calais Campbell – 9 Tackles, Sack
GB – Brad Jones – 9 Tackles
The Packers head into their bye week 6–3 after 4 touchdown passes by Aaron Rodgers. The Packers gained 176 yards rushing, the most by the Packers in a game since 2009 vs the Cleveland Browns. The Arizona Cardinals drop to 0–7 all-time at Lambeau Field after losing their fifth consecutive game.
With their win on the other side of Lake Michigan against the longtime rival Detroit Lions, Green Bay improved to 7–3 and set a franchise record of nine straight regular season victories over their three division rivals, dating back to Week 17 of their 2010 season.
After winning against the Lions, the Packers traveled on the road to take on the Giants, who eliminated them from the playoffs last season 37–20. The Packers were overpowered as they would lose 38–10 and dropped to 7–4 on the season. With the Bears win earlier in the day, the Packers now sit in 2nd place in the NFC North.
With their home victory over their bitter rival from Minnesota, the Packers won their fifth consecutive game against the Vikings and franchise-record tenth straight matchup against a division rival. Vikings RB Adrian Peterson was a major threat during the first half, and as a result the Vikings led 14–10 at halftime. However, the Packers were able to score 13 unanswered points in the second half and keep the Vikings in check for the remainder of the game, thereby winning 23–14 and dropping their rival to 6–6.
Upon winning, the team improved to 8–4 and retook the lead in the NFC North after the rival Chicago Bears lost to the Seattle Seahawks at home in overtime. This would also be the last time Rodgers would throw an interception at a home game until Week 5 of the 2015 season.
The Packers look to continue their division dominance by trying to extend their winning streak in Wisconsin against the Lions to 22 straight games (including the 1994 playoffs) on Sunday Night Football during Week 14.
The Packers fell behind Detroit 14–0, but regained momentum when defensive lineman Mike Daniels returned a Lions fumble 43 yards for a touchdown, helping to put the Packers down only 14–10 at halftime. On their opening drive of the second half, Aaron Rodgers gave the Packers the lead for the first time with a 27-yard touchdown run. The Lions would tie the game 17–17 on a Jason Hanson field goal, and after both the Packers and the Lions would both miss field goals, the Packers finally got the lead for good on a 14-yard touchdown run by rookie DuJuan Harris. A Mason Crosby field goal gave the Packers a sure 27–17 lead with just over 4 minutes left in the game. The Lions would kick a field goal with 7 seconds left, but failed the onside kick attempt, giving the Packers a 27–20 win and eliminating the Lions from playoff contention. With a win against the rival Bears the following week, the Packers can clinch the NFC North division.
The Packers fell behind 7–0 to the Bears early in the 2nd quarter, but three consecutive Aaron Rodgers touchdown passes to James Jones gave the Packers a 21–7 lead midway through the third quarter. The Bears would pull to within 8 points late by way of two Olindo Mare field goals, but the Bears couldn't mount a comeback. With the 21–13 win, the Packers clinched the NFC North division title for a second season in a row and secured a playoff berth for the fourth consecutive season.
With the win in their regular season home finale, the Packers improved to 11–4 on the season, 7–1 at home, and 3–1 against the AFC South by winning their first game against Tennessee since 1998, the final year the AFC franchise was referred to as the Oilers.
With a 37–34 loss to the Vikings, The Packers failed to clinch the #2 overall seed in the NFC and a first round bye while finishing 11–5. The Packers loss set up a playoff re match between the Packers and the Vikings in the Wild Card round of the playoffs. The Packers held Vikings RB Adrian Peterson 9 yards short of breaking the NFL regular season rushing record (2105 yards). The Packers' 12-game winning streak against division rivals was snapped as they lost their first game vs. a rival since their 7–3 loss to the Lions in Week 14 of the 2010 season. Also, the loss to the Vikings killed the Packers' chance of having a perfect record against division rivals for the second season in a row, as well as losing their 5-game winning streak vs. the Vikings.
By virtue of clinching the NFC North division title the Packers hosted a playoff game in the Wild Card round. The Packers win against the Titans in Week 16 guaranteed at least the 3rd seed in the NFC; However, the Packers fell short of the #2 seed and a first round bye by failing to win in Week 17 over the Vikings.
Despite trailing early in the first quarter, the Packers were able to score 24 unanswered points due to a Vikings defense demotivated by a bad performance from Vikings backup quarterback Joe Webb (starter Christian Ponder was injured in regular season finale). The Vikings began to catch up in the fourth, but it was too little, too late as the Packers got their first playoff win since 2010 and first home playoff victory since 2007.
NFC Divisional Playoff Game: at San Francisco 49ers
NFC Divisional Playoff Game: Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers – Game summary