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Notebook: Williams Makes Impact On D-Line


DETROIT - Each week it seems another member of the Packers defensive line moves into the spotlight, and Sunday it was Corey Williams' turn.

Last week it was Aaron Kampman making the majority of the impact plays on the defensive line, but this week Williams recorded two sacks plus another tackle for loss on a running play, all of which played a big part in the Packers' 31-24 victory at Ford Field.

"We're all great players, we've got good talent," Williams said of the defensive line, probably the most consistent of the defensive units through three games this season. "We just all have to go out there and play, and whoever's time it is, it's their time."

Williams' first sack came in the first quarter when he dropped Jon Kitna for a 6-yard loss on first down. The play came right after the Lions had driven across midfield, and two plays later they had to punt the ball away.

Williams also stuffed running back Kevin Jones for a 3-yard loss on the opening play of the fourth quarter when Detroit was backed up near its own goal line. That helped force the Lions to punt from their own 5, and the good field position that resulted set up the Packers' final TD.

Williams' last big play was his biggest, when he sacked Kitna for an 8-yard loss on fourth-and-2 with just under 2 minutes left in the game, turning the ball back over to the Packers.

"I just kept pushing, it was that second effort," Williams said. "Coach always stresses to us about working with that second effort, not giving up on the first move you make and keep going."

Keeping Favre clean

Against a defensive unit that had recorded five sacks through its first two games, the Packers offensive line did not allow quarterback Brett Favre to get taken down once.

Part of that was due to planned rollouts and other scrambles that moved the pocket and bought time for Favre to throw, but the line still deserves credit for its performance against a tough Detroit group.

"They have an excellent pass rushing defense, and they were going to be a big challenge coming in," center Scott Wells said. "To hold them to no sacks was huge, and they only had a few pressures. I think we did an adequate job today, but there's still room for improvement."

The line also limited the impact of Detroit defensive tackle Shaun Rogers, who had four unassisted tackles but was not as dominant in the middle as many thought he might be against the young interior of the offensive line.

"We paid attention," offensive tackle Mark Tauscher said. "We know he's a stud and we have to take care of him.

"We can't let him run free and make a ton of plays. He's going to make plays, but you have to try to limit what he does, and I think we did a pretty good job of that."

Big first catch

Koren Robinson made his first pass reception as a Green Bay Packer a critical one.

On the Packers' third-quarter TD drive, Robinson made a diving catch near the sideline for 24 yards, converting a third-and-7 that gave the Packers a first down at the Detroit 13.

"I had to lay out for that one," Robinson said. "It looked like I was about to lose it, but I held onto it real tight, kept my hands real strong to hold onto it."

Two plays later, the Packers were in the end zone and had a 24-14 lead.

Robinson also was much more productive on kickoff returns than in his debut last week.

On Sunday, he averaged 28 yards on three returns, making a few tacklers miss and getting some extra yards with good footwork and instincts. His best return went for 31 yards on his final return of the day, a sign to Robinson that the kickoff return unit might be ready to bust one.

"I feel it, I feel it coming," he said. "I feel like everybody's getting used to everybody. they're getting used to me back there returning, I'm getting used to the guys blocking, they know what I'm going to do and I know what they're going to do. So I feel like we're going to have a big return soon."

Over 100, with help

After his 75-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter, Greg Jennings didn't have far to go to record his first 100-yard game in the NFL. He finished with three catches for 101 yards.

But he had to give an assist to Donald Driver for most of those yards. On the 75-yard TD, Driver held a downfield block on Dre Bly for several steps to clear Jennings' path to the end zone.

The big play was redemption of sorts for Driver, who had dropped a short pass on the Packers' opening possession when he was wide open in the flat and would have easily picked up the first down.

"I let a ball slip out of my hands on a big play that could have been," Driver said. "The next time I said, 'Greg, I promise, you get the ball I'm going to spring you,' and he took it to the house."

The touchdown was the 400th TD pass of Favre's career, and Jennings initially made a rookie mistake, giving the milestone ball to the official.

"I had to make sure I got the ball back," Jennings said.

Other milestones

With his 131 yards from scrimmage (63 rushing, 68 receiving), Ahman Green moved ahead of Jim Taylor and into second place on the Packers' all-time list with 9,791. He now stands 111 yards away from taking over the top spot, held by James Lofton at 9,901.

For his career, Green is now over 10,000 yards from scrimmage, going over the mark on a second quarter carry. Including his time in Seattle, Green has 10,122 career yards from scrimmage.

Driver's three catches moved him past Max McGee and into sixth on the Packers' all-time list with 347 receptions. He also caught his 29th career TD pass, needing one more to become the 11th player in franchise history with 30 TD receptions.

Key replay ruling

The only instant replay review of the game went Green Bay's way, and it proved important.

Late in the third quarter at the end of an 8-yard gain near midfield, Ahman Green lost the ball as he was going to the turf, and Detroit recovered. The officials ruled Green was down, but the new replay rules allow that call to be challenged, and Detroit asked for the review.

On the replay, it appeared Green's knee was on the ground as the ball was being stripped. At worst, the video was inconclusive, and the Packers kept the ball.

The drive did not produce any points, but the resulting Green Bay punt pinned Detroit on its own 2-yard line. When the Packers defense held, it set up a short field for the offense, which drove 43 yards for a touchdown to make it 31-21 early in the fourth quarter.

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