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Packers come back late, but still fall at Denver

The Green Bay Packers season still has 11 games left. But opportunities to get wins against seemingly inferior opponents is running short.

Sunday, Green Bay’s defense held Denver to just one touchdown and four field goals but faltered early and late offensively in losing at Empower Field at Mile High 19-17.

“Obviously, extremely disappointed,” Packers coach Matt LaFleur told reporters after the game. “We just keeping digging ourselves in a hole. Give credit to Denver. They did enough to win, but it’s just disappointing to have no points at the half. ... It’s just way too fragmented and just not consistent execution.”

After getting shutout in the first half, Green Bay mounted touchdown drives in the third and fourth quarter of 75 and 76 yards, respectively. Their second touchdown, a Jordan Love sidearm pass from four yards out deflected off Romeo Doubs into the hands of Jayden Reed, gave the Packers a 17-16 lead with 8:35 left to play.

On Denver’s ensuing possession, their drive stalled at the Green Bay 34, resulting in a Wil Lutz 52-yard field goal, returning the lead to the Broncos at 19-17 with 3:50 left.

The Packers had almost four minutes and 75 yards to the Broncos end zone, but just needing a field goal.

Five plays into what would turn out to be their final drive, quarterback Jordan Love’s pass from the Green Bay 46-yard line deep down the right side was intercepted by P.J. Locke, effectively ending the game.

“Probably should’ve called a safer play where you get half of it and try to set yourself up for a manageable situation on the next down,” LaFleur said. “We took a shot. Obviously, we didn’t come through.”

Making the play call more egregious was the acknowledgement last week from LaFleur that Love has struggled throwing the deep ball and higher percentage calls could benefit his productivity. In addition, running back A.J. Dillon was open in the flat.

The Packers now have some soul searching to do the road that lies ahead, with games still with contenders Detroit, Kansas City, and Tampa Bay.

“We just lost to Denver. Not saying they’re terrible, but come on,” defensive back Rasul Douglas said. “We’ve got to win — and it’s just hard for us to win. Whatever we’ve got to do to change that, I think that’s what we’ve got to do.”

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