GREEN BAY, WI (WHBL) - The Green Bay Packers, despite losing to the Steelers on Sunday, can still make the playoffs, thanks to an early Christmas present from the Chicago Bears. The Bears blew a chance to win the N-F-C North Division, after they got crushed at Philadelphia 54-11 Sunday night. The Packers had lost at home to Pittsburgh a few hours earlier, 38-31. That means Green Bay and Chicago will play for the North Division crown and a playoff berth next Sunday in their regular season finale at Soldier Field. Detroit was eliminated from the post-season after losing at home to the New York Giants, 23-20 in overtime. The Packer-Steeler contest was a wild see-saw affair, played during a snowstorm in Green Bay. The Packers had come back from a 10-point deficit to tie the game in the fourth quarter, when Matt Flynn fumbled the ball away on a quarterback scamper near the Green Bay 20-yard-line. Le'Veon Bell scored the winning touchdown on a one-yard run with 1:25 left. With no time-outs left, the Packers made it down to the Pittsburgh one-yard-line when right tackle Don Barclay was called for a false start. It pushed them back five yards and knocked 10 seconds off the clock. Flynn then over-shot Jarrett Boykin on the game's final play. The Packers suffered some major injuries in the game. Linebacker Clay Matthews re-injured the broken right thumb he suffered in early October. Running back Eddie Lacy also left early, when he re-injured the right ankle he hurt two weeks ago against Atlanta. Lacy ran for 84 yards and two touchdowns. He broke the Packers' rookie season rushing record with 1,112 yards - seven yards more than the mark John Brockington held for 32 years. Flynn threw for 232 yards and threw a touchdown pass to Jarrett Boykin. He also threw an interception that was run back for a touchdown. James Jones was Green Bay's leading receiver with nine catches for 84 yards. Bell ran for 124 yards. The Packers lost despite having the edge in total yards 370-343. The Pack also kept the ball about seven minutes longer.
Green Bay fell to 7-7-1, losing for the first time in three games. Pittsburgh improved to 7-8 to keep its slim playoff hopes alive. Next Sunday's Packer-Bear game has been moved from noon to 3:25 pm.