ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Veteran Mario Williams and third-string newcomer Bacarri Rambo made for an unlikely Buffalo Bills defensive duo.
They played havoc with Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers in a 21-13 victory on Sunday.
Rambo, filling in after backup safety Duke Williams was hurt early in the third quarter, intercepted Rodgers on consecutive drives in the second half. Williams helped seal the victory when he forced Rodgers to fumble into the end zone, which led to a safety when running back Eddie Lacy picked up the ball with 1:51 left.
The play was whistled dead at that point, because only Rodgers was allowed to advance the ball with under 2 minutes remaining.
Marcus Thigpen scored on a 75-yard punt return, and Dan Carpenter hit all three field goal attempts, including a 51-yarder in the second half to help keep Buffalo (8-6) in the AFC playoff picture. The Bills are assured their first eight-win season since going 9-7 in 2004.
The Packers (10-4) had a five-game win streak snapped, and squandered an opportunity to get closer to their sixth consecutive playoff berth.
Rodgers finished 17 of 42 for 185 yards and two interceptions. It was an unlikely meltdown for Rodgers and the offense that entered the game on a tremendous roll.
Rodgers had been picked off just three times this season, and none since throwing two in Green Bay's last loss, 44-23 at New Orleans on Oct. 26.
The Packers were limited to Lacy's 1-yard touchdown run and two field goals by Mason Crosby.
This from a team coming off a 43-37 win over Atlanta and that had outscored its past five opponents by 210-113. Rodgers combined for 1,580 yards passing with 16 touchdowns and no turnovers in his previous five games.
All that came to a halt against a dominating Bills defense that last week contained Peyton Manning. Despite a 24-17 loss at Denver, the Bills ended Manning's 51-game streak with a touchdown pass.
The Bills acquired Rambo last month after cornerback Leodis McKelvin sustained a season-ending ankle injury. Rambo had played 13 games with Washington before being cut after Week 2 this season.
Rambo took over for Duke Williams, who was playing in place of injured starter Da'Norris Searcy (hamstring).
This time the Bills defense — with help from its special teams — bailed out its sputtering Kyle Orton-led offense, which was limited to 253 yards and 13 first downs. Orton finished 14 of 27 for 158 yards and an interception.
The Packers were held to 333 yards — their lowest total since managing 320 in a 42-10 win over Minnesota on Oct. 2. And they held Green Bay to 10 points on eight first-half possessions.
The Packers entered the game having scored six touchdowns and four field goals in each of their previous 10 first-half drives spanning the past two games.
The Bills went ahead for good when Carpenter capped their second-half opening drive with a 51-yard field goal.
The game's momentum turned later in the quarter, after Carpenter hit a 35-yard attempt to put Buffalo up 16-10.
Two plays into the Packers' next possession, Rambo sprinted 10 yards from midfield to make a sliding interception of Rodgers' pass intended for Randall Cobb at the Green Bay 45.
His second one came on the Packers next drive when Rodgers' pass intended for Jarrett Boykin over the middle, tipped off the receiver's hands and to Rambo. That set up Carpenter hitting a 48-yard field goal.
The Packers weren't done until their first play on their final possession.
From his 10, Rodgers dropped back and had the ball knocked out of his hand by Mario Williams, who burst in from the left side and out-muscled backup lineman JC Tretter.
Thigpen provided a spark after the Bills offense combined for one first down and 12 yards on its first three possessions.
With Buffalo trailing 3-0, Thigpen fielded Tim Masthay's punt at the right hash mark, and then cut across the field to find a hole up the left side.
Mario Williams also contributed a special-teams play, by blocking Crosby's 53-yard field-goal attempt with 6:01 left in the second quarter.
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