Rodgers on Kaep: We didn't have any answers for him
SAN FRANCISCO -- This was most definitely not how the script was penned back in Green Bay.
Aaron Rodgers was supposed to light up the 49ers, make anyone left in the front office and in the fan base sorry they chose Alex Smith over him with the No. 1 overall pick back in 2005. The Chico Kid and Cal Idol who fell to No. 24 overall in that draft, with his Packers teammates, would razzle, then dazzle the Faithful, and send anyone rooting for the 49ers home with as dopey a look on their face as he was forced to wear in the NFL draft green room almost eight years ago.
49ers 45, Packers 31. And, really, save for a late touchdown pass from Rodgers, it wasn't that close.
[INSTANT REPLAY: 49ers 45, Packers 31]
"We knew we were going to have to score some points," Rodgers admitted. "I'm disappointed we couldn't get any on that first drive of the second half, but we were able to come back and get a field goal and they go down and score and we knew that we were probably going to have to put up 38 points at least to win the game."
Instead, a pair of turnovers -- a fumbled punt inside their own 10-yard line and a Rodgers interception downfield -- resulted in 14 points for the 49ers. Rodgers, trying to hit the hobbled Jordy Nelson deep down the middle, overthrew him and was picked off by Terrell Brown. It was the first interception thrown by Rodgers in 184 pass attempts, over five-plus games.
That the Packers actually led at one point, 14-7, seemed to be a good omen for anyone wearing a Styrofoam cheesehead inside Candlestick Park. In fact, the Packers only trailed by three points, 24-21, at halftime and would be receiving the kickoff to start the second half.
"He's a great quarterback, leads that team in a great way," said 49ers right guard Alex Boone. "Just a big game by our defense today, holding him and stopping him."
On that first series after halftime, the Packers went three-and-out, Rodgers getting sacked for the only time in the game, by Patrick Willis, on third and four.
"We felt good," Rodgers said. "You know, we gift-wrapped them 14 points on two turnovers. In the game, our defense was doing all right and in the second half, we just didn't score any points."
By then, Rodgers' counterpart on the 49ers took over, and Colin Kaepernick put on a show, both with his legs and his arm. Kaepernick's 181 yards rushing set an NFL record for most rushing yards by a quarterback.
And yes, Rodgers was impressed.
"He was running all over the field," Rodgers said. "He's big, strong, athletic, throws the ball well and runs the ball extremely well. We didn't have a whole lot of answers for him."
Instead, there were simply more questions for Rodgers, who actually had a better passer rating than Kaepernick -- 91.5 to 91.2 -- while throwing for 257 yards on 26 of 39 passing with two touchdowns and the interception.
"It's pretty frustrating," Rodgers said. "Put a lot into this. Now I stand here and you realize that this is the last time that group is going to be together.
"We didn't do enough on offense. We could have helped the defense out a little bit. A touchdown there on the first possession (of the second half) would have put us in a good situation, but came up short."