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Green Bay Packers take control of NFC North after win

The Green Bay Packers did more than eliminate the Detroit Lions from postseason contention on Sunday night. They took control of the NFC North.

A 27-20 win coupled with a loss by the Chicago Bears gives the Packers sole possession of first place in the division with three games to play. The 9-4 Packers can clinch their second straight NFC North title with a win at Soldier Field next Sunday.

The Packers overcame a slow start against the Lions, falling behind 14-0 before getting to work. Green Bay rushed for 140 yards and two scores, including a statement go-ahead drive in the fourth quarter that included seven straight runs for 59 yards. DuJuan Harris -- making his Packers debut -- capped it with 14-yard touchdown run. "Ground and pound" in Green Bay.

The rushing game took the pressure off Aaron Rodgers, who failed to throw a touchdown pass for the second time this season. He did score on 27-yard scramble in the second quarter, capped by a Lambeau Leap he'd like to hide from any intrepid "60 Minutes" producers.

The Packers remain in the hunt for a first-round playoff bye. A win against the Bears coupled with a San Francisco 49ers loss to the New England Patriots next week would move the Packers into the No. 2 spot in the conference.

Are the Packers developing the same mojo that carried them to a Super Bowl title two seasons ago? We'll have a better idea after next week, but we saw some promising signs Sunday night.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @DanHanzus.

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