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Green Bay thought it had forced overtime when Rodgers directed a 16-play, 90-yard drive for the tying score. He improvised two huge plays on fourth down, beginning with a scrambling, backhanded flip of a pass to James Jones for an 18-yard gain on fourth-and-1 at the 21.

John Abraham sacked Rodgers for a 2-yard loss and a false start on Bryan Bulaga left the Packers with another fourth down from the 10. With Falcons owner Arthur Blank waving the crowd into an uproar on the sideline, the home team rushed only two players and dropped everyone else into coverage.

Rodgers had all the time he wanted, finally sliding to his left and rifling a pass to Nelson in the back corner of the end zone. He managed to get both feet down just before being shoved out of bounds by Thomas DeCoud.

“You go down and score a touchdown, and you’re thinking overtime,” said Rodgers, who passed for 344 yards, led the team in rushing with 51 yards but had a huge fumble at the goal line midway through the second quarter. “Tying the game was pretty special.”

Weems quickly brought the crowd of more than 68,000 back to its feet. He took the kickoff 4 yards deep in the end zone, found a seam up the middle and looked as if he might break it all the way. Wilhelm stopped that by yanking at Weems‘ facemask. Of course, the 15-yard personal foul penalty pushed the Falcons onto the Green Bay side of the field.

“The penalties were unacceptable,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “You can’t have them.”

Rodgers tied the game at 10 with a 1-yard run in the third quarter, but all he could think about was that fumble trying to score from the same distance in the first half. On fourth-and-goal, he lowered his head in an attempt to sneak it over, but the ball popped loose in the end zone. Mike Peterson fell on it to end Green Bay’s streak of 15 quarters without a turnover, its longest since 1963.

“That’s what lost the game,” Rodgers said. “It’s discouraging not to win a game we should have won.”

Michael Turner, who rushed for 110 yards, put the Falcons ahead 17-10 in the opening minute of the fourth quarter. On yet another huge fourth-and-goal play, this one from inside the 1, Turner bounced outside and went in standing up.

The Packers gave up more points than they had in the past three weeks combined, having surrendered only 10 in wins over the New York Jets, Dallas and Minnesota. Green Bay had a four-game winning streak overall, good enough for a tie with Chicago for the NFC North lead. The Bears hosted Philadelphia in a late-afternoon game.

NOTES: Green Bay lost CB Pat Lee in the first quarter with an ankle problem, and TE Spencer Havner hurt a hamstring in the third. … Falcons RB Jason Snelling also sustained a hamstring injury and didn’t play in the final period. … LB Stephen Nicholas started for Atlanta ahead of first-round pick Sean Weatherspoon. … The Falcons improved to 19-1 at home with Ryan starting at quarterback.