GREEN BAY, Wis. – Brett Favre jogged out of the tunnel in a purple helmet. He might as well have been wearing a black hat.
For the second time in less than a month, Favre sliced up his former team as the Minnesota Vikings beat the Green Bay Packers 38-26 at Lambeau on Sunday. Despite being jeered repeatedly by Packers fans who once cheered his every move, Favre completed 17 of 28 passes for 244 yards and four touchdowns.
“Packer fans cheer for the Packers first,” Favre said. “I know that. But I hope that everyone in the stadium watching tonight said, ’I sure hate those jokers on the other side, but he does play the way he’s always played.”’
High-stakes, emotional drama aside, this much is clear: The Vikings (7-1) took a firm hold on the NFC North standings.
The Vikings’ defense roughed up Favre’s successor, Aaron Rodgers, sacking him six times.
But Rodgers – who finished with 287 and 3 TDs – wasn’t hung up on outdueling Favre.
“I hate losing to whoever’s at quarterback for them,” Rodgers said. “I hate losing to the Vikings.”
Already leading 17-3 at halftime, Favre threw into triple coverage under pressure and rookie Percy Harvin came down with the ball while Woodson, Atari Bigby and Nick Collins tumbled to the ground like extras in a slapstick comedy as the Vikings took a 24-3 lead.
But Rodgers answered by driving the Packers to three straight scores in the third quarter — a field goal and a pair of touchdown passes to tight end Spencer Havner.
Rodgers wasn’t finished, scrambling for 35 yards to set up a 10-yard touchdown pass to Greg Jennings. After a failed 2-point conversion attempt, the Packers trailed 31-26 with 10:26 remaining.
Driving with a chance to take the lead, the Packers stalled out and Mason Crosby missed a 51-yard field goal attempt.
Peterson then took a screen pass 44 yards down the left sideline to the 15. With the Vikings facing third-and-11, Favre threaded a ball through the secondary for a touchdown to Bernard Berrian.
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