Clay Matthews

With Rodgers out, Vikings cruise past Packers 23-10

Aaron Rodgers has engineered many a last-minute comeback for the Green Bay Packers. He has a dozen victories over the rival Minnesota Vikings in 10 years as the starter.

This time? No chance. Rodgers was long gone, and so was Green Bay's division lead.

Harrison Smith led the Minnesota defense's thorough dismantling of the Packers, who lost Rodgers to a broken collarbone and left with a 23-10 defeat to the Vikings on Sunday that transformed the trajectory of the NFC North race.

Smith had 1½ sacks on safety blitzes, a diving interception and two pass breakups, helping the Vikings (4-2) limit the injury-depleted Packers to a season-low 227 yards.

"I...