DETROIT (AP)—Brett Favre’s gambling style has helped him win three NFL MVP awards and plenty of games for Green Bay. It also cost the Packers a win Thursday.
“I guessed wrong a couple times and I was just off a couple times,” Favre said. “That’s going to happen in this league. They just made the plays.”
Dre’ Bly made the most of them; intercepting two passes to negate scoring opportunities for Green Bay. Bly also forced a Javon Walker fumble, setting up Hanson’s go-ahead 49-yard field goal to make it 16-14 early in the fourth quarter.
The Lions (4-8) surpassed their victory totals from each of the past two seasons and extended their home winning streak to three games.
“I’m glad we had an opportunity to showcase our abilities in front of the world,” Bly said
The Packers (6-6) dropped 1 1/2 games behind the Minnesota Vikings, who play at St. Louis on Sunday. Green Bay had won three of its previous four games to get back in the division race.
Green Bay’s Mike Wahle said the Packers “absolutely” have run out of chances to make the playoffs.
“At 6-6, with four games left? You think 8-8 is going to get us in the playoffs?” he asked.
Green Bay coach Mike Sherman—and many of his players—said the Lions played their traditional Thanksgiving Day game with more passion than the Packers.
“This is their football game,” Sherman said. “We knew that we were going to have to come out and play 60 emotionally charged minutes of football and we didn’t do it. That’s disappointing.”
In addition to harassing Favre throughout, the Lions stifled running back Ahman Green, holding him to 57 yards. Green came in averaging an NFC-best 120.5 yards and had run for at least 100 in a franchise-record four straight games.
Green Bay is 21-2 when Green runs for 100 yards, but the standout didn’t get close to that mark against Detroit’s suddenly stingy defense.
“That was the key to the game,” Detroit safety Corey Harris said. “I don’t care if you’re Brett Favre, Dan Marino or John Elway, if your team can’t run, you’re in trouble.”
Favre broke his right thumb Oct. 19 against St. Louis, but on Thursday he tied Forrest Gregg’s team record by playing in his 187th consecutive game. It was also Favre’s 185th straight start, extending his NFL record for a QB.
It was not Favre’s finest effort, however.
He was 23-of-37 for 296 yards with two touchdowns. But in the second half, he threw the three interceptions and had the fumble. Favre’s first two interceptions were hard-thrown balls directly at Bly, and the third was an up-for-grabs lob that Doug Evans snatched with about a minute left.
“We were never able to get Detroit on their heels, and that’s how you win football games,” Favre said.
Then, Hanson’s 46-yarder gave the Lions a 19-14 lead with 9:17 to go. That was plenty of time for Favre to engineer a comeback, of course, but Bly made his sixth interception of the season and returned it 19 yards to Detroit’s 46.
Eight plays later, Hanson’s 32-yard field goal padded the Lions’ lead with 3:34 left. Hanson has missed only one of 19 FG attempts all season.
Detroit’s Joey Harrington was 21-of-32 for 183 yards and an interception and helped the Lions score on their first three drives. He completed 15 of his first 17 passes one game after throwing four interceptions in a loss at Minnesota.
“He was very efficient,” Detroit coach Steve Mariucci said.
The Lions have been playing on Thanksgiving Day since 1934, before 24 current NFL teams existed. Detroit has played the Packers 17 times, more than any other team, on the holiday and is 11-5-1 against them. … Green Bay safety Darren Sharper (bruised ribs) and linebacker Nick Barnett (ankle) were sidelined after being injured in last weekend’s win against San Francisco. ..Detroit’s Shawn Bryson ran for 50 yards and a TD.