AP Story: Giants Knock Out Favre And Packers, 14-7

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The New York Giants left Brett Favre and the Green Bay Packers wobbly.

Tiki Barber rushed for 182 yards and scored on a 52-yard touchdown run, and Kurt Warner threw a touchdown pass to Jeremy Shockey in a 14-7 victory Sunday at Lambeau Field, where Favre was knocked from the game with a concussion.

The Giants improved to 3-1 despite a series of missed opportunities, including three errant field goal attempts by Steve Christie.

"This was a phenomenal win for us," defensive end Michael Strahan said. "Our rate of improvement has been quicker than I expected."

And the rate of Green Bay's descent has been equally surprising.

The Packers, mired in a mess with cornerback Mike McKenzie and trying to overcome infighting and injuries, fell to 1-3 for the first time since 1993 and have their first three-game losing streak under fifth-year coach Mike Sherman.

Favre sustained a concussion when defensive lineman William Joseph knocked him to the ground in the third quarter, then he missed the next two plays. Favre went back in on fourth-and-5, waved backup Doug Pederson to the sideline and floated a 28-yard touchdown pass to Javon Walker for a 7-0 lead.

"I wasn't surprised that he came back in and threw a touchdown pass like he did," Strahan said.

The Packers' medical staff sure was -- they hadn't cleared Favre to return to action.

Sherman said he turned to Favre and asked if he was OK. Favre said yes, so in he went.

"The doctors told me after that they didn't want him back in the ballgame," Sherman said.

So, Favre was done for the day.

And soon the Packers were, too.

"Brett Favre is Brett Favre," Giants cornerback Terry Cousin said. "We couldn't underestimate Doug Pederson. He's a good quarterback who's been in the league a long time. But only Brett Favre can make some of those throws and make something out of nothing. That's the difference between him and everybody else."

Favre, who extended his NFL quarterbacks record to 212 consecutive starts, counting playoffs, didn't speak to reporters afterward. Several teammates said they doubted his starting streak was in jeopardy.

Warner said that when they spoke on the field afterward, Favre was fuzzy.

"I talked to him just for a minute to see how he was feeling. He didn't remember the touchdown play," Warner said. "You knew he wasn't quite right."

Two plays after Favre's TD, Barber beat the blitz with a 52-yard touchdown run to tie it at 7.

"We had to strike right away," said Barber, who carried 23 times. "Rarely do you get a run like that. It takes good blocking and luck."

Warner appeared to have made a costly mistake when he did a hook slide 18 inches shy of the goal line, but Shockey juked cornerback Michael Hawthorne and grabbed a 4-yard TD pass on third-and-goal to give New York a 14-7 lead with 12 minutes left.

"Next time, I'll dive head first," Warner said.

Pederson hurt his side on a hit near the sideline but stayed in until the final play, when third-stringer Craig Nall threw a 24-yard pass to Robert Ferguson to the Giants 32. But the clock expired before he could spike the ball and take a shot at the end zone.

The Packers have been a team in turmoil and are now in full crisis management.

McKenzie was deactivated for the second consecutive game with a mysterious hamstring injury. He wasn't on the sideline Sunday even though the other injured players all were. Sherman said he came in for treatment only.

Since ending his holdout without retracting his trade request three weeks ago, McKenzie has been paid more than $485,000 but has played just nine snaps, all against Chicago, leading fans to wonder whether he's still holding out but getting paid anyway.

Neither team did much offensively in a scoreless first half, the first time since Oct. 6, 1980, that the teams had gone into their locker rooms at Lambeau Field without any points.

Notes

  • Warner's streak was ended at 127 passes without an interception when he threw into triple coverage from the 2 in the first half and Darren Sharper picked it off.
  • The Packers have lost six of their last 12 home games after going 22-3 in their first 25 under Sherman.
  • Favre has thrown a TD pass in 29 consecutive games, third-longest streak in NFL history.
  • DE R-Kal Truluck (stinger), LB Hannibal Navies (shoulder), KR Antonio Chatman (ankle), Hawthorne (ankle) and Sharper (back) all were hurt for Green Bay.
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