AP Game Summary: Packers Overpower Bills 31-21

Green Bay’s new-look defense forced turnovers on three of Buffalo’s first four possessions, powering the Packers to a 31-21 preseason victory over the Bills on Saturday. - More Packers-Bills Game Center | Halftime Recap | Game Photos Video: Game Highlights


Green Bay's new-look defense forced turnovers on three of Buffalo's first four possessions, powering the Packers to a 31-21 preseason victory over the Bills on Saturday.

Quarterback Aaron Rodgers hit seven straight passes to begin the game for Green Bay, finishing 8 of 9 for 98 yards and two touchdowns. The only potential bad news for the Packers came in the form of injuries to safety Nick Collins and backup quarterback Matt Flynn.

Starter Trent Edwards was 7 of 11 for 45 yards and an interception for the Bills, who were without injured receiver Terrell Owens. Bills backup Ryan Fitzpatrick threw a TD and an interception. He was 12 for 16 for 112 yards.

Running back Marshawn Lynch was held to six yards on six carries as the Bills had trouble moving the ball without Owens and were held scoreless until late in the third quarter.

Collins went to the locker room for X-rays on his ribs before halftime, and Flynn left the game with a shoulder injury in the fourth quarter.

It was the second straight dominant defensive performance of the preseason for the Packers, who are making the transition to a 3-4 alignment under new coordinator Dom Capers after the defense shouldered much of the blame for a disappointing 6-10 record in 2008.

The defense had four interceptions in a 17-0 shutout of Cleveland last week.

The first-team unit looked even sharper Saturday against a Bills offense trying to show off its no-huddle look without Owens, who is nursing a sprained toe and did not make the trip to Green Bay.

With Buffalo facing second-and-11 on its first possession, Collins tipped a pass intended for Lee Evans and it was intercepted by linebacker Brady Poppinga, who returned it to the Bills' 29-yard line.

Buffalo's defense stuffed Packers running back Ryan Grant on a fourth-down conversion attempt. But the Packers sacked Edwards and forced a fumble that was recovered by A.J. Hawk, giving the ball to Green Bay at the Buffalo five-yard line. Rodgers immediately found Greg Jennings on a slant pattern for a touchdown.

After a stop by the defense, Rodgers found second-year tight end Jermichael Finley for gains of 18 and 21 yards, then hit Donald Driver with a 21-yard pass to set up a three-yard touchdown run by Grant to give Green Bay a 14-0 lead with 1:29 left in the first quarter.

Fred Jackson fumbled on the Bills' next possession, again giving the ball back to the Packers.

Rodgers began the game completing seven straight passes for 93 yards, missing his first one when a short slant bounced off Driver in the end zone. Rodgers went right back to Driver on the next play for a touchdown to give Green Bay a 21-0 lead with 10:43 left in the second quarter.

Fitzpatrick then was hit by rookie linebacker Matt Jones and fumbled late in the second quarter -- the Bills' fourth turnover of the half -- but struggling second-year quarterback Brian Brohm couldn't cash in and the Packers settled for a 36-yard field goal by Mason Crosby to take a 24-0 lead into halftime.

The Bills were driving midway through the third quarter, but linebacker Desmond Bishop picked off Fitzpatrick on fourth-and-2 -- the Bills' fifth turnover.

Buffalo finally scored with just over a minute left in the third quarter when Fitzpatrick threw a 9-yard touchdown to Jonathan Stupar, then added a 1-yard touchdown dive by Xavier Omon midway through the fourth quarter. Tyrell Sutton scored for the Packers with 2:51 remaining, and Buffalo's Bruce Hall scored on a 1-yard run with 1:33 left.

Packers rookie tight end Devin Frischknecht was taken off on a stretcher and taken to the hospital after sustaining what appeared to be a serious shin injury in the third quarter.

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