Aaron Rodgers throws for 4 TDs, Packers open with 43-34 win over Vikings
MINNEAPOLIS - In a football game unlike any other in Green Bay's previous 101 seasons, the Packers unveiled their plans for a more run-oriented offense in a dominant offensive ground game Sunday at the Minnesota Vikings.
The Packers spread the football throughout a 43-34 win, their second season-opening victory in as many years with coach Matt LaFleur. The final numbers might not indicate how important the run game is now to LaFleur's system, but everything the Packers did on offense Sunday — and they did a lot — centered on the ground.
Aaron Rodgers finished 32-of-44 for 364 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions, a 127.5 rating. Davante Adams tied Don Hutson's single-game receptions record set in 1942 with 14 grabs, adding 156 yards and two touchdowns.
Adams didn't realize it was his 14th catch until Rodgers told him on the sideline.
"I wish I would have broken it," Adams said.
Despite a couple key drops, Marquez Valdes-Scantling had a solid debut following last season's struggles, catching four passes for 96 yards, including a 45-yard touchdown.
"The thing that I was noticing this training camp was he was catching the ball better. ... I think he was trusting his hands more," Rodgers said.
Meanwhile, Aaron Jones had only 66 yards on 16 carries, though last season's NFL touchdown leader did add one score.
Still, this was an offensive attack built on the ground game, something the Packers indicated would be the case throughout the offseason. The Packers had 32 carries for 158 yards.
The Packers defense coughed up 34 points, though 24 of those were in the final quarter. The defense was mostly shutdown in the first half after allowing an opening-drive touchdown, allowing the Packers to seize control of the game with a 22-10 halftime lead.
The game was played without fans because of restrictions to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The NFL also continued its campaign to promote racial equality, delivering a video message before the national anthem. The Packers stayed in the locker room for the anthem, while the Vikings stood and knelt on the sideline.
Green Bay will play its home opener next Sunday against Detroit, which blew a big lead in a 27-23 loss to Chicago.