More rematches ahead.
After Green Bay routed Minnesota 24-10 Saturday night, it set up a trip to San Francisco. The 49ers beat the Packers at Lambeau Field to open the season.
The Packers didn’t let 2,000-yard rusher Adrian Peterson run over them again. Indeed, Packers fullback John Kuhn had a bigger impact with two touchdowns.
And the Houston Texans are heading back to New England, where their season began to unravel. A 19-13 win over Cincinnati on Saturday in the wild-card round means the Texans have a date next Sunday in Foxborough. Arian Foster, the catalyst in the victory against the Bengals, isn’t fazed by facing the AFC East champions, who routed Houston 42-14 last month.
Houston (13-4) lost three of its last four games to blow home-field advantage in the conference, slipping to third overall.
New England (12-4) is a 9 1/2-point favorite.
“I’m not a big believer in momentum,” Foster said. “Every Sunday you have to come out and bring your best or you can get beat on any day.”
Adrian Peterson and the Vikings didn’t bring their best to Green Bay. One week after Peterson rushed for 199 yards to lift Minnesota into the playoffs, the 2,000-yard runner was held to 99. And Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder was sidelined by an elbow injury; backup Joe Webb couldn’t manufacture much offense.
On Sunday, the Beltway will be buzzing. First, AFC North champion Baltimore hosts Indianapolis. Then NFC East winner Washington plays Seattle.
While Houston heads to Foxborough next weekend, AFC West winner Denver (13-3) will host either Baltimore or Indianapolis next Saturday. NFC South champ Atlanta (13-3) gets either the Redskins or Seahawks next Sunday.
Packers 24, Vikings 10
Ten receivers caught passes from Aaron Rodgers, tying a playoff record, with Kuhn scoring on a 9-yarder. DeJuan Harris also had a 9-yard TD run, and Green Bay kept Peterson in check. It was a turnaround from what the star running back did in his last trip to Lambeau, when he rushed for 210 yards.
It was Rodgers’ first home playoff victory.
Minnesota’s late touchdown was a 50-yard pass to Michael Jenkins.
Next, the Packers get the Niners (11-4-1), who won 30-22 at Lambeau to start the season. San Francisco is a 3-point favorite.