RB Ryan Grant is just 101 yards away from 1,000 on the season.
CHICAGO - When Ryan Grant cut back through Chicago's defensive line for a 24-yard run on the Packers' first offensive play on Sunday, it looked like it might be a good day for a ground game taking on added importance in the cold, blustery conditions.
But, like most everything else for the Packers at Soldier Field on Sunday, it didn't work out.
Grant did rip off a 66-yard touchdown run in the second quarter on another nice cutback, but other than those two runs, Green Bay's feature back was held to just 10 yards on 12 carries. Grant finished with his fifth 100-yard game of the season, at exactly 100 yards on 14 rushes, but that didn't mean much in the 35-7 defeat.
"We were pretty hit-or-miss," offensive tackle Mark Tauscher said. "Our stats will look fine, but I think when you look at the grand scheme of thing we weren't as effective as we needed to be, and we put ourselves in positions where we weren't going to be effective converting third downs."
That was certainly true. The Packers were just 3-of-12 on third downs, and by falling behind 28-7 by the midway point of the third quarter, they forced quarterback Brett Favre to throw the ball 32 times compared to just 14 for Chicago's Kyle Orton.
"That's not the game we wanted to get into," Favre said.
The Packers continue to try to find the right combination at guard on the offensive line. They opened the game by switching Junius Coston to left guard and moving Jason Spitz to right guard. Then Daryn Colledge subbed in for Coston for a stretch, before Coston went back in.
"We're trying once again to solidify that situation at guard," Head Coach Mike McCarthy said. "That's still not a clean operation for us, and that's why we're still doing what we're doing."
Crosby ties mark
Kicker Mason Crosby only had an opportunity to score one point on Sunday, on a point-after-touchdown, but that single point tied Ryan Longwell's franchise record for points in a season by a kicker. Crosby has 131 points, the same total Longwell accumulated in 2000.
Longwell also is 13 points shy of the NFL record for points in a season by a rookie kicker. Chicago's Kevin Butler scored 144 points in the Bears' Super Bowl season of 1985.
With four catches on Sunday, receiver Donald Driver became just the third receiver in Packers history to amass 500 receptions. Driver now has 503 catches, third on the franchise's all-time list behind Sterling Sharpe (595) and James Lofton (530).
Driver also surpassed 80 catches on the season for the fourth time in his career and has 82 this year. The only other Packers receiver with four 80-catch seasons was Sharpe.
Tight end Bubba Franks returned from his knee injury and saw game action for the first time since Oct. 14 vs. Washington. Franks had one catch for 8 yards.
Receiver Greg Jennings injured an ankle in the second half and was being evaluated after the game.
Defensive tackle Ryan Pickett was inactive due to his groin injury, leading to the first NFL start for rookie first-round draft pick Justin Harrell, who posted five total tackles (four solo).