Another QB hurt, Packers D dented by Eagles
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) - Aaron Rodgers carried a clipboard. Seneca Wallace wore a knit cap and a downtrodden look relegated to the sideline with a sore groin.
Ravaged again by injuries, the Packers still got a good performance out of third-string quarterback and former practice squad player Scott Tolzien considering the circumstances.
As it turns out, quarterback may not have been the biggest concern for coach Mike McCarthy following a 27-13 loss Sunday to the Philadelphia Eagles .
"We had a lot of tough situations today, no excuses," McCarthy said. "I thought Scott Tolzien played as well as could be expected."
Tolzien, who played in college at Wisconsin, entered after Wallace left following the first series with the groin injury. Rodgers was already out with a fractured left collarbone suffered in a Monday night loss to the Bears.
Tolzien was 24 for 39 with 280 yards and a touchdown with two interceptions. He zipped a 22-yard pass to Brandon Bostick with 3:29 left in the third quarter to cut the Eagles' lead to 20-10.
Nick Foles was better.
A week after tying the NFL record by passing for seven TDs, Foles threw for three long touchdowns.
Foles found DeSean Jackson for a 55-yard score in the first half. Touchdown passes to Riley Cooper from 45 and 32 yards highlighted a 17-point second half for the up-tempo Eagles.
"He has great poise," Cooper said about Foles. "He's going to sit in the pocket and kind of dissect the defense."
Philadelphia handed Green Bay its first back-to-back home losses since 2008, Aaron Rodgers' first season as the starting quarterback. It was the worst home loss for the Packers since falling 38-10 to the New York Jets on Dec. 3, 2006.
The Eagles, the NFL's road warriors, improved to 5-5, with all their victories coming away from Philly.
They won a battle of attrition at Lambeau Field on Sunday.
"You've got to win your home games," McCarthy said. "We've lost two in six days and this stings."
Foles exposed Green Bay's secondary in the second half. Cooper was wide open on both of his long scores, rolling over the goal line on his 45-yard TD catch after being untouched on the ground, then working his way free toward the left sideline after Morgan Burnet slipped for a 32-yard score to make it 27-10 with 10 seconds left in the third quarter.
Linebacker Clay Matthews returned after a four-game absence, wearing a large, black wrap to protect his injured right thumb. The Packers did manage three sacks, but pass-rushing specialist Matthews was neutralized mostly by the tricky, quick-strike Eagles.
"I've never been a part of something like this, where we can't stop a team in the last two weeks," defensive lineman B.J. Raji said. "Need the ball back for your offense, and whatever they ran worked."
The Packers won't use injuries as an excuse. Still, health issues have exacted a heavy toll.
Start at quarterback, where until last week, Green Bay had just three starters over the last 22 years - Brett Favre (253 games), Rodgers (86) and Matt Flynn (two).
Wallace was 5 for 5 for 25 yards before leaving with his injury. McCarthy was so impressed with Tolzien's day that he anointed him the starter for next week's game at the Giants.
"I thought he played really well, for a guy that was on the practice squad and that they just signed and got him in there," Kelly said.
Already without Rodgers and Wallace, Green Bay lost two starting offensive linemen in center Evan Dietrich-Smith and right tackle Don Barclay to knee injuries.
That left guard T.J. Lang, who was returning from a concussion, to slide over to center - meaning the Packers went most of the game with a third-string quarterback and backup center.
Cornerback Casey Hayward (hamstring) and linebacker Nick Perry (foot) also left after re-aggravating injuries.
LeSean McCoy finished with 155 yards on 25 carries, the second straight week that Green Bay's typically staunch run defense had allowed a 100-yard rusher. McCoy softened the Packers with runs of 9 and 25 yards on the Eagles' first series of the second half before Foles found Cooper for the 45-yard score and a 17-3 lead.
Foles finished 12 of 18 for 228 yards. He still hasn't thrown an interception this season. It could be tough for Michael Vick to get his starting job back any time soon. He was inactive a second straight week with a hamstring injury.