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Packers hold on for win over Vikings Submitted: 09/15/2019

GREEN BAY - Aaron Rodgers threw two early touchdowns and the Green Bay Packers held on for a 21-16 win over the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday.

On a day when the Packers honored late Hall of Famer Bart Starr at halftime, Rodgers put on quite a show - particularly early. Rodgers completed nine of his first 10 passes for 134 yards and two touchdowns and had a perfect 158.3 rating through the first quarter. He finished 22 of 34 for 209 yards.

The Packers improved to 2-0 under new coach Matt LaFleur after opening the NFL's 100th season with a victory at rival Chicago. They also beat the Vikings (1-1) for the fifth time in the past seven games at Lambeau Field.

Kevin King intercepted Cousins late in the end zone to preserve the win.

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Taylor, Cephus lead No. 17 Wisconsin to victory Submitted: 09/08/2019

MADISON - MADISON, Wis. (AP) " Quintez Cephus has been through a lot.

The junior wide receiver missed the final five games of Wisconsin's 2017 campaign because of a broken right leg and did not play at all last year after being expelled from school following sexual assault charges.

Cephus was acquitted by a jury last month, reinstated by school officials and was ruled academically eligible for last week's opener at South Florida.

After hauling in only three catches for 39 yards in the Badgers' 49-0 victory last week, the Georgia native finally had his breakout game at Wisconsin.

Cephus scored his first two touchdowns of the season, Jonathan Taylor rushed for three touchdowns and caught another, and No. 17 Wisconsin cruised past Central Michigan 61-0 in its home opener Saturday.

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Rodgers, dominant D lead Packers to victory over Bears Submitted: 09/05/2019

GREEN BAY - CHICAGO (AP) " Aaron Rodgers doesn't have to lay waste to a defense to enjoy Packers football.

He sure had a good time seeing what his guys on the other side of the ball did Thursday night to the archrival Bears.

"Yeah, it was fun to watch," Rodgers said after Green Bay opened the NFL's 100th season with a 10-3 victory over Chicago. "It's been a long time since I've seen a performance like that. Obviously, a lot of credit to Mike Pettine and his staff, but to those players, just incredible.

"We didn't do them a whole lot of favors with our performance on offense. I mean every time we needed something a stop, they came up with some really big plays."

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Packers release safety Josh Jones Submitted: 08/25/2019

GREEN BAY - The Green Bay Packers released safety Josh Jones Sunday morning, per ESPN's Adam Schefter.

Jones made 12 starts for the Green and Gold in 29 total games on the team. He was Green Bay's second round pick in 2017.

Jones' snap count was projected to drop this year with the signing of free agent safety Adrian Amos and rookie Darnell Savage.

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Jordy Nelson holds retirement press conference Submitted: 08/06/2019

GREEN BAY - Jordy Nelson signed a one-day contract with the Packers on Tuesday and announced his retirement after 11 seasons, 10 of which he spent in Green Bay.

"I'll be remembered as a Packer," the 34-year-old wide receiver said. "Obviously I enjoyed my year last year in Oakland. But this is where I started and it's great to come back and end it that way."

Nelson was known for his speed, size and chemistry with quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who was the starter for Nelson's entire tenure in Green Bay. Rodgers' face lit up as he spoke about his former teammate, who shook hands with both Packers and Texans players following the teams' joint practice.

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WR Jordy Nelson officially retires as a Packer Submitted: 08/04/2019

GREEN BAY, WIS. (AP) - Veteran wide receiver Jordy Nelson is retiring as a member of the Green Bay Packers.

The 34-year-old Nelson played in Green Bay from 2008-2017, winning a Super Bowl with the Packers, before spending last season with the Oakland Raiders.

Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst said Sunday that Nelson had informed the team of his decision. A news conference was planned for Tuesday.

Nelson had 550 receptions and 69 touchdown catches in his 10 seasons in Green Bay. He made the Pro Bowl in 2014, missed the 2015 season with a knee injury and was named the 2016 Comeback Player of the Year.

The Packers selected Nelson in the second round (36th overall) of the 2008 draft out of Kansas State. He played in 136 regular-season games, including 88 starts, for Green Bay.

Nelson led the Packers with nine receptions for 140 yards and a touchdown in Green Bay's 31-25 Super Bowl victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2011.

He played in 15 games for Oakland last year, finishing with 63 receptions for 739 yards and three TDs.

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Packers defense shines at training camp Submitted: 07/26/2019

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GREEN BAY - Bringing in new head coach Matt LaFleur made a lot of people excited about the Packers offense.

But in the offseason the Packers focused on bolstering Mike Pettines defense by adding five new weapons

For the first time in almost a decade the Packers just might have a defense that can support its offense.

"There are a lot of guys in this room that have a lot of talent and a lot with lots of experience too. I think not being one of the older guys is incumbent enough for us to help them catch up on defense and point things out we've seen over the past few years to help everyone be on the same page," said defensive end Dean Lowry. 

The Packers lined up Dean Lowry, Kenny Clark and Montravius Adams on the d-line at camp.

General Manager Brian Gutekunst decided to release Mike Daniels, leaving cap space to really cash in on Lowry and Clark's veteran talent.

"We've really grown together as football players, for him to still be a part of it and for them trying to keep us together, it's pretty cool," said defensive lineman Kenny Clark.

The secondary is pretty solid too, headlining a young group with second year cornerback Jaire Alexander and new addition safety Adrian Amos.

"Football is about competition and just getting after it. We went back and forth, talking and bringing energy is always great for camp," Amos said.

Riding into his fourth year, linebacker Blake Martinez knows his leadership will help put all the pieces together.

"For me, I hold my hat high on being able to communicate and get guys lined up and make sure they are in the right mindset pre-snap and there's no questions when it's time to play," Martinez said.

Gutekunst said building up the defense means the team won't have to solely rely on Aaron Rodgers to make the magic happen.

Even QB1 notices the stronger presence on the other side of the ball.

"I think Blake is very comfortable as kind of the quarterback of the defense. We've brought in a lot of maturity in that group, with keeping Tramon around, Adrian Amos and the Smiths. It's just a different feel on that side of the ball and little more juice," Rodgers said.

Two crucial players in Pettine's schemes have not participated in the first two days of training camp.

Second-year corner Josh Jackson and rookie safety Darnell Savage Jr. are both on the non-football injury list. LaFleur said neither injury is long term.

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Former Packers QB Bart Starr dies at 85 Submitted: 05/26/2019

GREEN BAY - Bart Starr, the gentlemanly quarterback and catalyst of Vince Lombardi's powerhouse Green Bay Packers teams of the 1960s whose sneak won the famed "Ice Bowl" in 1967, died Sunday. He was 85.

The Packers selected Starr out of the University of Alabama with the 200th pick in the 1956 draft. He led Green Bay to six division titles, five NFL championships and wins in the first two Super Bowls.

The Packers said Starr died in Birmingham, Alabama, where he lived. He had been in failing health since suffering two strokes and a heart attack in 2014.

"A champion on and off the field, Bart epitomized class and was beloved by generations of Packers fans," Packers President Mark Murphy said in a statement. "A clutch player who led his team to five NFL titles, Bart could still fill Lambeau Field with electricity decades later during his many visits."

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Raptors finish off Bucks in Game 6 to reach NBA Finals for first time Submitted: 05/25/2019

- TORONTO (AP) Kawhi Leonard had 27 points and 17 rebounds to lead the Toronto Raptors into the NBA Finals for the first time with a 100-94 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night.

The Raptors overcame a 15-point deficit to win the series in six games and will host the Golden State Warriors in Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night.

Pascal Siakam scored 18 points, Kyle Lowry had 17 and Fred VanVleet 14 for the Raptors, who used a 26-3 run late in the third quarter and early in the fourth to turn the game in their favor.

Giannis Antetokounmpo led the Bucks with 21 points and 11 rebounds, but the NBA's top team in the regular season saw its bid for a first finals berth in 45 years come to a disappointing end with a fourth consecutive defeat.


Down 76-71 to start the fourth, the Raptors tied it with an 8-2 run while Leonard and Antetokounmpo were both on the bench. Ibaka's dunk with 10:32 to go tied it at 78.

Antetokounmpo returned after a timeout, but Leonard kept sitting. That didn't matter to Toronto, with Siakam's basket giving the Raptors an 80-78 lead, their first lead since it was 6-3.

Leonard's one-handed slam after Lowry's steal gave Toronto an 87-79 lead with 6:46 to go before the Bucks responded. George Hill answered with a layup, Brook Lopez converted a three-point play and Antetokounmpo scored to cut it to 87-86 with 5:19 to go.

Lowry and Lopez swapped baskets before Gasol's 3 put the Raptors up 92-88 with 3:50 left. After another basket by Lopez, Leonard made a 3 to push Toronto's lead to 95-90 with 3:04 to play. It was Leonard's first 3 after missing his first seven attempts of the game.

Toronto made 12 of 27 3-point attempts, including four of eight in the fourth quarter.

Siakam, who missed a pair of free throws late in the fourth quarter of Toronto's double-overtime win in Game 3, hit one to make it 98-94. Leonard grabbed the rebound on the second and was fouled. He made both, putting the Raptors up 100-94 with 3.9 seconds to go.

Brogdon and Middleton each made a pair from long range as the Bucks shot 6 for 9 from 3-point range in the first and closed the quarter with 10 unanswered points to lead 31-18. Toronto shot 6 for 19 in the opening quarter, missing six straight twice in the first 12 minutes.

The Bucks extended their lead to 38-23 on a 3 by Ersan Ilyasova with 7:46 left until half. Toronto cut the gap to 46-43 on a 3 by VanVleet with 1:07 left in the second, but Eric Bledsoe answered with a 3 and Antetokounmpo split a pair at the line, giving the Bucks a 50-43 advantage at the intermission.


The lead went back to 15 in the third before Leonard finished the period with a flourish. He had eight points in the final 2:01 and Toronto closed with a 10-0 run, cutting a 15-point deficit to 76-71.

TIP-INS

Bucks: Milwaukee shot 4 for 16 in the second but three of its made baskets were 3-pointers. ... The Bucks had six points in the paint in the first half. ... Coach Mike Budenholzer was called for a technical foul on Milwaukee's first possession of the second half. Leonard missed the free throw. ... Antetokounmpo shot 5 for 10 at the free throw line.

Raptors: Danny Green, who missed all three of his field goal attempts in 16 minutes in Game 5, had another rough night. Green shot 0 for 4 in 14 minutes. ... Leonard's 17 rebounds were his most in any game this postseason. ... Lowry had eight assists.

DRAKE WATCH

Raptors fan and 'global ambassador' Drake sat in his regular seat adjacent to the Toronto bench. The rapper wore a black hoodie with 'KAWHI ME A RIVER' printed on the back.

UP NEXT

The NBA Finals comes to Canada for the first time when the Raptors host the Warriors on Thursday night. Toronto swept Golden State in the regular season.

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Bucks drop Game 5, are one game away from elimination Submitted: 05/23/2019

MILWAUKEE - MILWAUKEE (AP) " Kawhi Leonard scored 35 points and the Toronto Raptors beat the Milwaukee Bucks 105-99 on Thursday night to take a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference finals.

Leonard showed no obvious signs of the leg soreness that bothered him in Toronto's victories in the previous two games, hitting the 30-point mark for the fourth time in the series. He made five 3-pointers and had seven rebounds and nine assists.

Fred VanVleet scored 21 points, hitting seven 3s. Kyle Lowry added 17 as the Raptors put themselves in position to advance to the NBA Finals for the first time. A victory at home Saturday would set up a matchup with two-time defending champion Golden State.

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