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Packers relish in clinching #1 seed, but don’t plan to rest in regular season finale

Green Bay Packers' Davante Adams reacts after catchiong a touchdown pass during the first half...
Green Bay Packers' Davante Adams reacts after catchiong a touchdown pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the Minnesota Vikings Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Aaron Gash)(Aaron Gash | AP)
Published: Jan. 3, 2022 at 2:05 AM CST
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WSAW) -The Packers primetime matchup with the Vikings became even more meaningful right before kickoff, when the Arizona Cardinals defeated the Dallas Cowboy. That meant that if Green Bay beat Minnesota, the Packers would lock up the #1 seed in the NFC, and they made sure to take care of business against a depleted Minnesota roster, handing them a 37-10 defeat.

With it, for the second straight year, the road to the Super Bowl in the NFC goes through Lambeau Field.

“I don’t want to say a sense of relaxation, because that’s definitely not what it is at all,” said Davante Adams on clinching the top seed. “But it’s comforting to know that we kind of have that to lean on.”

While yes, the Packers had home field advantage last year and didn’t make the Super Bowl, remember: Lambeau was at right around 10% capacity during that playoff run.

That won’t be the case this time around.

“The fact that there’s fans in the stands is a big deal,” said head coach Matt LaFleur. “I think that will definitely play in our favor as we move forward.”

The Packers earning home-field and the only first round bye is especially impressive given the injuries they’ve had to overcome this year, and some of those key reinforcements could be on the way back for the playoff run

“I like the vibe of this team,” said Aaron Rodgers. “You know we’ve had a lot of key, key players not play for us.

“And I really feel like there’s a possibility to get a few of those guys back for this stretch run, and that’s exciting.”

The Packers could rest their banged up guys for a full two weeks, but that doesn’t sound like the plan for their key players in the regular season finale next Sunday in Detroit.

“I’m gonna play next week, and I expect Davante to play and our guys to play,” Rodgers said. “So, I’m looking forward to finishing off the season on a high note and then getting the bye.”

“Having two weeks off; to each his own, but I wouldn’t want to do that,” said Adams. “So, I would want to play next week at least some.”

“If you’re asking me right now, my gut is that these guys are going to play at least a little bit next week,” said LaFleur postgame.

Sunday was another history making night at Lambeau: The Packers are the first team ever to win 13 games in three consecutive seasons, LaFleur breaks a record for the most wins by a head coach in his first three seasons with 39, and Adams broke his own franchise record for most catches in a season with 116.

But the most important part? The quest to bring the Lombardi Trophy home will begin in Titletown three weekends from now.

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