Clearly on a mission, the Packers were a study in precision and productivity in their 145th encounter with the Detroit Lions.
The chronological and statistical record of their first half scoring operations tells the story...eloquently.
-Drive One: Packers move 74 yards in 13 plays, Ryan Longwell kicks 30-yard field goal, 3-0.
(Lions "interrupt" with 64-yard scoring strike, from Joey Harrington to Az-Zahir Hakim, at 7:32. Jason Hanson converts, Lions 7, Packers 3).
-Drive Two: Packers move 64 yards in 9 plays, Favre-Franks 4 yards for touchdown, Longwell PAT, Packers lead, 10-7.
-Drive Three: Packers move 65 yards in 9 plays, Longwell kicks 40-yard field goal, Packers increase lead to 13-7.
-Drive Four: Packers move 17 yards in 7 plays, Longwell kicks 36-yard field goal, Packers increase lead to 16-7.
-'Drive' Five: Safety Marques Anderson picks off Harrington pass, returns 14 yards for touchdown, Longwell PAT, Packers increase lead to 23-7.
-Drive Six: Packers move 68 yards in 6 plays, Najeh Davenport scores on one-yard run, Longwell PAT, Packers increase lead to 30-7 at halftime.
It was more of the same in the third quarter, which saw the Packers elevate their lead to 40-7, by way of a 33-yard Longwell field goal and Favre's 9-yard scoring pass to fullback William Henderson, contributions which had the Green and Gold out front 40-7 going into the final period.
But it was essentially over at the intermission, at which point the Packers had already amassed 345 yards from scrimmage, an entirely respectable total for a full game.
They ultimately emerged with 503 net yards (150 rushing and 353 passing), their best single-game production since December 11, 1994, when they rolled up 516 yards (157 rushing, 159 passing) in a 40-3 victory over the Chicago Bears in Lambeau Field.
The 27 points the Packers scored in the second quarter are the most they have registered in one quarter of any game since December 20, 1992, when they posted 28 in the second quarter of a 28-12 victory over the Los Angeles Rams, also in Lambeau Field.
Favre, at his productive best, passed for over 300 yards in just three quarters of work (he was relieved by Doug Pederson in the opening seconds of the fourth quarter), completing 26 of 39 attempts for 351 yards and 2 touchdowns - without an interception.
It was the 35th 300-yard effort of the 33-year-old field general's career, the most by any active NFL quarterback.
His 295 passing yards in the first half represented the highest first-half total of his career. His previous high was 287 yards, recorded earlier this season against Chicago.
In the process, split end Donald Driver emerged with a career day, snaring 11 of Favre's passes for 130 yards.
The defense, meanwhile, held the Lions to that lone first-quarter touchdown until early in the fourth period, when Harrington hit tight end Mikhael Ricks with a one-yard scoring pass to culminate a 65-yard drive.
THE FAVRE FILE: As has become something of a habit for No. 4, he again moved up in the NFL record book, forging past Joe Montana into sixth place in career passing yards with 40,871. Montana had closed out his career with 40,551.
Favre also moved past Vinny Testaverde (5,726) into fifth place in career passing attempts. with 5,739.
Favre's two touchdown passes swelled his season total to 17 and his career total to 304. He currently is pursuing Frank Tartkenton (342), who is second on the NFL's lifetime list. Dan Marino is the all-time leader with 420.
The freewheeling Favre also made his 166th consecutive start, again extending his NFL record for quarterbacks, and played in his 168th game, taking over fifth place on the Packers' career list for most games played. He had been tied with tight end Ed West at 167.
THE DRIVER FILE: In snaring a career-best 11 passes (his previous high was 7 in the season opener against Atlanta Sept. 8), Donald Driver matched the fourth-highest single game total in Packers history.
His also was the first 11-catch effort by a Packers wide receiver since Oct. 14, 1996, when Don Beebe weighed in with that number.
Driver's 130 yards also were a personal career-high, surpassing the 120-yard effort he recorded against the Chicago Bears on Oct. 7 in posting the first 100-yard receiving performance of his four-year NFL career.
THE LONGWELL FILE: Placekicker Ryan Longwell made four field goals for the seventh time in his six-year NFL career, the latter total including a club record-tying 5 against Arizona in 2000.
In posting 16 points, Longwell also came within one point of his career, single-game high, 17, against Arizona on September 24, 2000.
THE (NFL) STATISTICAL UPDATE: Although Brett Favre's passer rating went up as the result of his weekend performance against the Detroit Lions, his ranking went down slightly in the process.
Favre, the NFL leader last week with 100.2 rating, is now second with a 101.7 mark, based upon 195 completions in 297 attempts for 2,244 yards and 17 touchdowns, with 4 interceptions.
The new leader is the St. Louis Rams' second-year quarterback, Marc Bulger, with a 107.4 rating. Bulger has completed 92 of 138 passes for 1,149 yards and 10 touchdowns, with 3 interceptions, in leading the Rams to four straight victories.
Favre has moved up from fifth to third place among the NFC's third-down passing leaders with a 94.7 rating, based upon 50 completions in 81 attempts for 660 yards and 3 touchdowns, with one interception. He remains seventh among fourth-quarter passing leaders with an 85.0 rating, based upon 28 completions in 45 attempts for 256 yards and one touchdown, with no interceptions.
As a team, the Packers moved up marginally on offense - despite their 503-yard outing against the Lions, edging up to seventh place from a tie for eighth a week ago (11th in rushing and 6th in passing).
Tied for eleventh on defense last week, they now rank 14th (23rd against the run and 11th against the pass).
Emerging from the Detroit contest with a "wash" - two takeaways against two giveaways - the Green and Gold still lead the NFL in the overall computation with a 15-plus reading. They have posted 29 takeaways (16 interceptions and 13 recoveries of opponent fumbles) and 14 giveaways (4 opponent interceptions and 10 lost fumbles).
The San Francisco 49ers remain runners-up in with the same 10-plus mark they held last week.
Ryan Longwell, by dint of his 16-point harvest against Detroit vaulted into the NFL scoring lead with 87 points. He has made all 30 conversions he has attempted and 19 of 24 field goal tries.
Though his day was cut short when he left the Lions game in the second quarter with a mild concussion, running back Ahman Green continues to rank third among NFC rushers with 762 yards in 174 attempts, a 4.4-yard average, and 5 touchdowns.
Third in total yards from scrimmage a week ago, Green is now fourth with 1,010, his total including 248 receiving yards.
Green also is fourth in the NFC in the production of first downs with 46 (34 rushing and 12 receiving) and tied for fifth place in conference non-kicker scoring with 42 points.
Split end Donald Driver, invading the NFC's top ten on the wings of his 11-catch game against the Lions, is now tied with the Rams' Isaac Bruce in eighth place with 46 receptions and has taken over fifth place in receiving yards with 649.
Defensively, safety Darren Sharper continues to share the league lead in interceptions with 4 and end Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila remains tied for second place overall with 8.0 quarterback sacks.
GM/HEAD COACH MIKE SHERMAN'S COMMENTS:
(on how good this team is) "A lot plays into that. There are so many factors that go into winning games; personnel, injuries...I can't predict that. That's why we play these games."
(on how complete this victory was) "From watching the tapes of the Lions, they are a significantly improved football team from when we played them the last time - we have too. Their offense has improved; so we were very concerned with the Lions coming into this game. Good teams don't panic, and we didn't panic at that point."
(on negatives in the game) "We put the ball on the ground trying to seal the game in the fourth quarter and that put our defense in some pretty precarious situations. We can't do that to be a championship team. That certainly was damaging."
(Green's status/Davenport) "Green had a mild concussion at the half. I wasn't going to use him unless I had to. It shouldn't be a problem. Davenport sprained his ankle. He is walking with a limp, but we are fairly encouraged that he is walking around on it."
(on Driver's production) "Driver comes to practice everyday and gives you everything he has. I can't say enough about impact he has made, not just as a receiver, but he came and made an impression upon me as a special team player. He was our best special teams player a year ago and he still does special teams duties for us. To say that he would at this point - I can't say that, but he has always made big plays for us. He has shown the ability to make big plays. In the starting role, he has shown that he is a starter in the National Football League, and a pretty damn good one."
(on Driver and Glenn making Favre better) " I can't say that they make him a better quarterback, but they do make his successful. Brett is pretty good on his own, but these guys compliment him extremely well. If we didn't have these guys, we wouldn't be able to put up the passing yards that we are."
(on Favre's knee injury) "Anytime he is wearing a brace, it is always an issue. He certainly wasn't hampered by that today and I don't think there was any play that we could say caused him to do this or not to do that. He was pretty efficient in this football game."
THE PLAYER PERSPECTIVE:
Quarterback Brett Favre: (on playing with a 40-7 lead) "It doesn't come around very often, but every week Coach Sherman stresses more and more not to believe all the good things that are said. It is difficult to come back and play your best football week in and week out after playing a great game the previous week. To play the way we did today, and the way Ahman did - it is just non-stop; guys being injured, guys having to step up. Forty points against anyone in this league is hard to do, and today was no exception."
(on how much better this team is compared to six weeks ago) "I think we are a lot better. It is easy to say that. You win a game like we did today and to play like we have played so far... The only difference is the confidence that we are carrying with us right now. Guys believe that they can't get it done and that is so crucial for a team's success and our team has it right now."
(on what was talked about at halftime) "We didn't say much. I had a banana and a glass of Gatorade. You can overanalyze a lot of things. You can't rest on that - we have games where we have kind of packed it in. We knew we had to continue to do what we were doing and be somewhat safe about it. I didn't think we were conservative in the second half. I thought we made plays."
(on how his knee is doing) " It feels fine. It is a little tight, the only time I really felt it today was when I went down and tackled Terry in the end zone. Not only that, I was upset that they took that touchdown away. But it feels fine."
Wide receiver Donald Driver: (on ranking his individual performance) "No drops - I'll take that. It was probably the best game that I have had all season. I showed my physical-ness by breaking tackles and making every catch count."
(on taking pride with your physical-ness) "People have been dogging me all season, and that's what makes me hungry. I am having a great year, and I just hopes this continues."
(on playing with Favre) " I told him the day that he retires I will tackle him and take the jersey off his back. That guy is a leader, a legend - he will go down as one the greatest quarterbacks to ever play this game, and I can go down saying that I caught balls from him. That's one thing that I'll be able to tell my grandkids and kids."
(on catching 9 passes in the first half) "I don't know. It was a big surprise to me because I didn't even know I had that many catches. I knew the ball was coming my way, but I don't count catches or anything like that. I was just trying to stay focused and keep making every play count. That is one thing that Brett does. Brett goes through his progression and a couple of routes were supposed to come to me; regardless of the situation the ball was supposed to come my way. He made some great throws and I just have to make every catch count."
Wide receiver Terry Glenn: (on the performance from all the receivers today) "The whole unit did well today. Not just the receivers, but we definitely did our part to contribute. You can't say enough about how important this game was today. Detroit probably came in thinking they could play with us like they did when we were there, but when we came out there and put that many points up there on the board, you can't say enough positive things about this team right now. We're all smiling right now. It feels great."
Linebacker Hardy Nickerson: (on his second quarter fourth down stop) "They were starting to really move the ball well, and we had a sense from the sideline that they were going to run a quarterback sneak. The linemen did a great job of plugging up everything in the middle, and when they bounced outside I was there waiting for him. We all did a great job on that play."
Safety Darren Sharper: (on the defense's performance) "We had just total domination didn't we? Our offense did a great job of making their game plan get a whole bunch smaller. It was very impressive. They made it extremely easy for us, any time a team has to put up a lot of points to catch up, it limits the options of the offense."
Safety Marques Anderson: (on his interception return) "Once again it seemed like I was just in the right place at the right time. The first thing I did was make sure I caught it, but as soon as that ball was in my hands, I could smell the end zone. I put a little extra on the end with that dive, I didn't want anything to take that thing away from me."
Linebacker Nate Wayne: (on his batted pass / interception) "It's all execution. I worked my way up to the quarterback and I got my hands up, I saw the back release inside, so I knew if I went down for the sack, (Harrington) would be able to just dump it off. So I kept my hands up, kept my feet on the ground, and just kept coming. Next thing I knew it was our ball and we were going the other way."
Running back Ahman Green: (on leaving the game and not returning) "If I needed to, I would have come back, but we had Najeh and Fish (Tony Fisher), so we were set up pretty well. We had a comfortable lead and the defense was playing strong, so we never had that need for me to come back in."
(on the offensive performance) "We looked well rehearsed out there today, we were running hard, making great downfield blocks, and really firing on all cylinders. I'd say things couldn't have gone any better. It just shows our patience, and how hard we are working to make sure we win."
-Sunday's victory was the Packers' fourth straight over the Lions and their 76th in the 73-year history of the series. The Lions have won 62 of the 145 meetings and there also have been 7 ties.
-Green Bay has now won 52 consecutive home games when establishing a 10-point lead (1993-2002). The NFL record is 53, by the Pittsburgh Steelers from 1989-2000.
-The 40 points the Packers posted against the Lions are the most they have scored in one game since Jan. 2, 2000, when they registered 49 in a 49-24 victory over the Arizona Cardinals in their final game of the 1999 regular season.
-Sunday marked the first game the Packers failed to get a sack in nearly a year, since Dec. 9 vs. Chicago. The Packers have posted at least one sack in 23 of their last 25 games.
-The Packers are now 19-2 under Mike Sherman when scoring first. They've won 17 straight, last losing such a game at Miami, 10/29/00.
-On third down, Green Bay's defense has allowed only one conversion in its last 17 snaps.
-Brett Favre's 351-yard passing performance Sunday was the seventh 300-yard effort of his career against Detroit, the most against any NFL opponent.
-The victory was the 15th over which Favre has presided against Detroit, compared to 7 losses.
-Favre now has one interception over his last 145 attempts, since a third-quarter pick vs. Carolina, Sept. 29.
-Safety Marques Anderson's 14-yard interception return for a touchdown was the second of the season for the enterprising rookie from UCLA, leaving him just one short of the team record for most defensive touchdowns in a season, 3, a mark shared by Herb Adderley (1965 - 3 interception returns) and Darren Sharper (1997 - 2 interception returns, 1 fumble return). Sharper also was a rookie in '97.
-Running back Ahman Green, who left the game with a mild concussion in the second quarter, saw sufficient action to go over the 1,000-yard mark for combined rushing and receiving yards for the season. He now has 1,010 yards (762 rushing and 248 receiving).
-Najeh Davenport posted his first career touchdown in the NFL, scoring on a one-yard burst up the middle late in the first half.
-Davenport's subsequent 43-yard run in the third quarter was the longest of the season for the rookie from Miami.
-Fullback William Henderson's 9-yard touchdown reception in the third quarter was his second scoring reception of the season, marking the first time in his eight-year career that he has scored more than one receiving touchdown in a season.
-Brett Favre moved past Joe Montana in passing yardage with a flourish, hitting rookie wideout Javon Walker with a 30-yard strike in the first quarter to surpass the 49ers icon.
-Billy Lyon, stepping in for the sidelined Cletidus Hunt at defensive tackle, made his first start of the season, the sixth of his five-year career.
-Rookie defensive end Aaron Kampman, meanwhile, made his fifth start of the season, taking over for Vonnie Holliday, who underwent knee surgery last week.
-Bubba Franks' 4-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter was his fourth of the season.
-David Martin replaced fullback William Henderson in the starting lineup as the Packers opened with a two-tight end alignment.
-The Packers posted two takeaways against the Lions, marking the eighth straight game in which they have registered two or more takeaways. They had posted one in their season-opening win over Atlanta.
-Brett Favre and Marco Rivera (offense), Gilbert Brown and Billy Lyon (defense) and Darrien Gordon (special teams) were Packers captains for Sunday's game.
-Packers inactives Sunday included cornerback Bryant Westbrook, linebacker Marcus Wilkins, tackle/guard Barrett Brooks, tight end Tyrone Davis, wide receiver Karsten Bailey, defensive end Vonnie Holliday, defensive tackle Cletidus Hunt and designated Third Quarterback Craig Nall.
-With a win this weekend, Green Bay would string together four road victories for the first time since 1997-98 (a five-game road winning streak, Dec. 1, 1997 - Sept. 27, 1998). The team hasn't won four straight in the same season since 1989.