Favre now winningest QB in NFL history after Packers' win
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (ESPN.com news services) -- Brett Favre didn't need a rocket arm to become the winningest quarterback in NFL history on Sunday. His 17 years of football knowledge and a near-perfect second half against a bad defense were plenty.
Future Hall of Famer Brett Favre is closing in on some impressive, and not-so-impressive, NFL records. On Sunday, he became the league's all-time winningest quarterback. (Stats through Week 2)
|Wins as starter||149||Favre|
|Passing yards||57,992||Dan Marino, 61,361|
|Interceptions||275||George Blanda, 277|
|TD passes||417||Marino, 420|
|Pass attempts||8,304||Marino, 8,358|
Favre completed his first 14 second-half passes and threw three touchdown passes to rally the Green Bay Packers to a 35-13 victory over the New York Giants' porous defense.
"Maybe someday down the road it will mean a lot," a typically humble Favre said after the 149th win of his career, moving past Hall of Famer John Elway.
What meant more to Favre was the game ball his teammates handed him after the Packers got off to their first 2-0 start since 2001.
"I'm not going to sit here and lie to you," added Favre, who was 29-of-38 for 286 yards and one interception. "I'm not going to turn it down. I've always been about the team. That hasn't changed. I think it's unfair that the quarterback gets labeled with wins and losses. I think it's a team effort."
While Favre refused to bask in the glory, Packers coach Mike McCarthy said any NFL record is a monumental achievement.
"I think a lot is made of statistics and touchdowns, but I think it's wins," McCarthy said. "When you go out and win over that period of time, that's the ultimate compliment a quarterback can have."
The loss was the second straight for the undisciplined and error-prone Giants, which hasn't happened at the start of a season since 1996 -- the year Dan Reeves got fired.
Tom Coughlin, who came into the season under pressure to do more than make the playoffs, may now be really under the gun.
"I think we are a better football team than we have shown," said Coughlin, whose team has already given up 80 points. "Obviously I don't have any real grounds for saying that, it is just a belief. I do believe we are all in it together and I do believe we are all embarrassed."
Favre threw a go-ahead 2-yard touchdown pass to Bubba Franks on the Packers' opening series of the second half. The eight-time Pro Bowl quarterback added TD tosses of 3 yards to Donald Lee, and 10 to Donald Driver after New York rookie Ahmad Bradshaw fumbled a kickoff.
"It's amazing," said Driver, who had eight catches 73 yards. "I'm just glad to say I am part of the legacy. When he gets ready to go to Canton, Ohio, I just hope to be in the audience cheering him on."
The Green Bay Packers got an impressive road win over the injury-riddled Giants. Surprisingly, QB Eli Manning not only played with a second-degree shoulder separation, but he delivered the ball well, for the most part. It wasn't necessarily the offense that led to the Giants' second loss, however. Instead, it was a marginal effort by the Giants defense that was costly. Head coach Tom Coughlin was willing to take some chances to try to pressure Brett Favre and slow down the Packers. They used a variety of blitz packages, but Favre was excellent at getting the ball out quickly vs. man coverage. He avoided the pressure, was patient in the pocket and got the ball in the hands of his playmakers. Wide receiver Donald Driver and tight ends Bubba Franks and Donald Lee each scored against underneath linebacker coverage that appeared to be outmanned.
-- Ken Moll, Scouts Inc.
Favre was 18-of-21 for 147 yards in the second half as he constantly exposed the Giants' defense with short passes.
Rookie DeShawn Wynn added touchdown runs of 6 and 38 yards.
Eli Manning, whose playing status was uncertain all week because of a sprained shoulder, played well, leading New York to scores on three consecutive series bridging the second and third quarters. Initial ESPN reports that said he would miss a month were inaccurate.
He threw a 26-yard touchdown pass to Plaxico Burress and helped set up field goals of 48 and 32 yards by Lawrence Tynes, who also missed a 34-yarder on the game's opening series.
"Physically I'm fine," said Manning, who finished 16-of-29 for 211 yards and an interception before being lifted after Green Bay scored its final touchdown. "Mentally, I am upset with the loss and missed opportunities."
Down 10-7 at the half, Favre dominated the second half.
A 42-yard kickoff return by Tramon Williams gave the Packers the ball at their 49. Favre needed 10 plays. He hit fullback Korey Hall for two 10-yard dumpoffs early in the drive and a 17-yarder to James Jones before finding the burly Franks for the go-ahead touchdown. Favre completed all five passes on the drive.
After Tynes' 32-yard field goal cut the gap to 14-13, Favre engineered an 80-yard drive on which he hit all nine passes, including the 3-yarder to Lee in the right corner of the end zone.
Favre iced the game after Bradshaw's fumble was recovered by Tracy White at the New York 22. Five plays later, he found Driver in the back of the end zone for a 28-13 lead.
The Giants were guilty of two major blunders.
Pro Bowl tight end Jeremy Shockey was called for a delay penalty (spiking the ball) after a first-down catch at the Packers 16 late in the first half with the score tied at 7. He later dropped a potential first-down pass at the Green Bay 3 just seconds later, forcing Tynes to make a 48-yard field goal and give the Giants a 10-7 lead.
Veteran Amani Toomer also had an embarrassing mistake. He was called for a taunting penalty at the Green Bay 8 a couple of plays before New York settled for Tynes' second field goal, cutting the Packers lead to 14-13 in the third quarter. Instead of third-and-goal at the Green Bay 8, New York was pushed back to the 23.
"We have no excuses," Coughlin said. "There is no explanation for it. We gave ourselves some opportunities and then took them away, so we became our own worst enemy."
The Packers have won six straight regular-season games, the last four of 2006 and the first two this year. Driver has caught passes in 82 consecutive games. ... Giants rookie receiver Steve Smith left the game in the first half with a shoulder injury. ...Green Bay kicker Mason Crosby, who was 3-for-3 last week, with a game-winning last-minute field goal, missed a 42-yarder on his only attempt this week.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
- Gene Steratore
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