GREEN BAY – The Packers are back in the playoffs, and it took a number of trials and tribulations to get there.
A 9-8 record, forged by a pair of three-game winning streaks since mid-November, earned Green Bay the NFC's No. 7 seed, and the Packers needed all nine of those wins.
In that spirit, here are the top 10 plays from the 2023 regular season that got the Packers their playoff berth – one from each victory plus one from the loss considered a turning point.
In chronological order:
- Pick-six by Quay Walker at Chicago, Week 1
The Packers were in command of the opener at Soldier Field, but the Bears still had 13-plus minutes left in the fourth quarter to perhaps mount a comeback. Walker made sure they couldn't, stepping in front of a Justin Fields pass intended for Darnell Mooney and taking it 37 yards to the house for the final points in a 38-14 blowout.
- Two-point conversion to Samori Toure vs. New Orleans, Week 3
Trailing the Saints 17-0 in the fourth quarter, the Packers rallied. One of several key plays came after QB Jordan Love's 1-yard TD run to get within 17-9, when Head Coach Matt LaFleur made the bold call to go for two. Love stepped up in the pocket, looked like he might run, and then zipped a pass across his body to Toure in the end zone to make it a six-point game with seven minutes left. That allowed Green Bay's next touchdown and PAT to win the game, 18-17.
- 20-yard TD to Luke Musgrave vs. L.A. Rams, Week 9
A game of fits and starts offensively finished with a flourish, as Love converted on third-and-12 with a 37-yard connection to Christian Watson, setting up this beautifully designed middle screen to Musgrave. Love faked throwing screens in both directions as Musgrave leaked wide open over the middle to put the final touch on a 20-3 triumph.
- 35-yard TD to Jayden Reed at Pittsburgh, Week 10
The Packers lost to the Steelers, but this play was emblematic of the offense's progress, as it got Green Bay back in the game from a 10-point deficit and was one of eight gains on the day of 20-plus yards. The end zone shot to Reed converted on third-and-16 and marked the first time all season Green Bay scored two touchdowns in the first half. The Packers would eventually take the lead and then lose it again, but the offense had turned a corner in terms of its explosiveness.
- 24-yard TD to Romeo Doubs vs. L.A. Chargers, Week 11
In a back-and-forth home game, the Packers needed to go 75 yards in the last five minutes or they'd be 3-7. A 35-yard catch-and-run by Dontayvion Wicks got the Packers into position, and then Love lofted one to the end zone for Doubs, who leaped and snatched it out of the air for the go-ahead TD with 2:33 left. Green Bay hung on for a 23-20 win.
- 27-yard fumble-return TD by Jonathan Owens at Detroit, Week 12
The Packers started the Thanksgiving game on fire, scoring touchdowns on their first two offensive possessions. In between, the Lions had posted a TD and were looking to match the second score when Rashan Gary hit Detroit QB Jared Goff as he was attempting a pass. The ball fluttered forward and Owens scooped it up and ran it back as several players on the field assumed it was an incomplete pass and the play was dead. Replay confirmed it was indeed a fumble, the Packers took a 20-6 lead late in the first quarter, and they held a two-score advantage all the way until the final minute of the game in a huge 29-22 victory.
- Keisean Nixon interception vs. Kansas City, Week 13
Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes had the ball at midfield with just over five minutes left and trailing by only five points when he tried to loft a fade to receiver Skyy Moore. Nixon read it so well he looked like the intended receiver, making the over-the-shoulder grab for the game's lone turnover. The Packers converted it into a field goal for a 27-19 lead and hung on from there.
- 36-yard completion to Doubs at Carolina, Week 16
The Packers had seen a 14-point, fourth-quarter lead vanish when they faced third-and-4 from their own 31-yard line, looking to avoid a third consecutive three-and-out on offense. Love gave Doubs a chance down the sideline against single coverage, and he made the leaping grab before tumbling to the turf. The Panthers thought Doubs had bobbled the ball as he went to the ground, but their replay challenge went for naught. The call stood and a 20-yard completion to Tucker Kraft two plays later set up a short field goal, allowing the Packers to escape Carolina with a 33-30 win.
- Preston Smith strip sack at Minnesota, Week 17
Green Bay already had a two-touchdown advantage late in the first half when Minnesota approached midfield in the final 40 seconds before intermission. Smith came off the edge and hit rookie QB Jaren Hall from behind, knocking the ball loose. Teammate Karl Brooks recovered, and three plays later Reed took a slant pass from Love 25 yards to paydirt as the Packers took full command with a 23-3 halftime lead.
- 59-yard completion to Reed vs. Chicago, Week 18
The Bears had just turned a Love fumble into a field goal to get within 14-9 early in the fourth quarter when the Packers wasted no time responding. On the first play of the ensuing drive, Love ran a play-action bootleg to his left and fired a dart to Reed in full stride. The rookie took it all the way to the Chicago 13-yard line, and the Packers hurried up to run their next play, fearing Reed might have stepped out of bounds on his sideline route before the catch. The Bears didn't challenge it, and the Packers tacked on a field goal in their 17-9 playoff-clinching victory.