Vonnie Holliday registered one of the Packers seven sacks of Arizona QBs
Vonnie Holliday and Green Bay's defense turned up the heat on a sweltering Saturday night as the Packers beat the Arizona Cardinals 29-21.
The temperature at kickoff for Arizona's first home game of the preseason was 105 degrees, the fifth-hottest game in the Cardinals' 15 years in the desert.
Arizona wants to have a big-play attack this season, but the first unit's lone touchdown came after a Packers turnover deep in Green Bay territory. The Packers scored the next 29 points.
Holliday had one sack and recovered a fumble for the Packers, and Brett Favre played nearly the entire first half, completing 9 of 17 passes for 125 yards and a touchdown.
Donald Driver, starting because of injuries to Terry Glenn and Robert Ferguson, caught five passes for 73 yards, including a 21-yard touchdown.
Fourth-string quarterback Preston Parsons rallied the Cardinals to two fourth-quarter touchdowns against the Green Bay reserves. He connected with fellow rookie Jason McAddley on a 74-yard touchdown play. Rookie Damien Anderson's 1-yard run cut the lead to 29-21 with a minute to go.
The Packers sacked Arizona quarterbacks seven times. They got Jake Plummer twice and backup Chris Greisen once while taking a 13-7 halftime lead.
"I was very pleased with how aggressive we've been on defense,'' Green Bay coach Mike Sherman said. "I think after that first drive we really outplayed them defensively.''
Rookie Josh McCown, Arizona's third-string quarterback, fumbled the ball into the end zone for a safety and was intercepted twice, all in the third quarter. Torrance Marshall picked off McCown's pass after it was deflected by an Arizona player and returned it 18 yards for a touchdown.
Holliday's fumble recovery set up the Packers' first touchdown. Na'il Diggs flattened David Boston for a nine-yard loss on a reverse play.
"The defensive line, we played electric tonight,'' Holliday said.
Steve Warren forced McCown's fumble into the end zone late in the quarter. Warren nearly recovered it for a touchdown, but the ball popped loose and McCown fell on it for a safety, giving the Packers a 22-7 lead.
Neither Plummer nor Greisen was effective. Plummer completed 4 of 8 passes for 56 yards. Greisen was 4-for-13 for 61 yards and was intercepted once.
Ahman Green fumbled on Green Bay's first play from scrimmage after a 10-yard gain and Arizona's Ray Thompson returned it five yards to the Packers' 21. Plummer threw nine yards to Boston, and Thomas Jones ran two yards for the touchdown to put Arizona up 7-0.
A fumbled snap stalled Green Bay's next drive, and Ryan Longwell's 47-yard field goal cut the lead to 7-3. Jones fumbled on Arizona's next possession, and Holliday recovered at the Cardinals' 24 yard line. Three plays later, Favre drilled a 21-yard touchdown pass to Driver and the Packers led 10-7.
Longwell's 25-yard field goal with 3:05 left in the half made it 13-7.
Backup quarterback Doug Pederson threw 39 yards to a wide-open Charles Lee for a touchdown to put the Packers up 20-13 with 12:33 to go in the third quarter.
-- Associated Press