Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers shreds Falcons' secondary

The Falcons' secondary was shredded by Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

Nickel back Brian Williams didn't play because of a knee injury and was declared inactive before the game. Christopher Owens, a second-year player from San Jose State, took over for Williams. He was drafted in the third round of the 2009 NFL draft. Also, safety William Moore was injured in the second quarter and was replaced by Erik Coleman. Moore returned to the action in the second quarter.

The Packers entered the game averaging 257.8 yards passing per game, which was fifth in the league. With Rodgers completing 18 of 21 passes, they nearly had their average in the first half. He had 234 yards and two touchdown passes at halftime.

The Falcons tried playing zone coverage. They tried playing man-to-man. They tried mixing zone and man together. They tried blitzing Rodgers.

Nothing worked. He had 330 yards passing going into the fourth quarter.

Rodgers engineered touchdown drives of 81, 92, 80, 80 and 50 yards. Mix those drives in with a 70-yard interception return for a touchdown by cornerback Tramon Williams and the Packers had a 42-14 lead going into the fourth quarter.

Weems sets record

Pro Bowl specialist Eric Weems ran into the NFL postseason record books with his 102-yard kickoff return in the second quarter. It was the longest return for a touchdown in playoff history.

Looping Clay

In the first matchup with the Packers, a 20-17 victory on Nov. 28, the Falcons held Packers Pro Bowl linebacker Clay Matthews sackless. Green Bay defensive coordinator Dom Capers had Matthews looping inside on his blitzes, and he came free for two. Cornerback Charles Woodson also had a sack in the second quarter.

Stopping Starks

Much was made of Green Bay rookie running back James Starks because he rushed for 123 yards in the wild-card game against Philadelphia. He wasn't a factor in the first half.  Starks was held to 14 yards (1.6 per carry) on nine carries and a long run of 4 yards.

Flags in the air

The Falcons had the fewest penalties in the league this season. They were penalized just 58 times for 598 yards.

In the first half Saturday, they had five penalties for 22 yards.

Etc. . .

Matt Ryan, Eric Weems, John Abraham, Todd McClure and Mike Peterson were the Falcons' captains for the game. . . . In addition to Williams, linebacker Spencer Adkins, tackle Garrett Reynolds, guard Mike Johnson, tight end Michael Palmer, defensive end Lawrence Sidbury and defensive tackle Trey Lewis were inactive. . . . Tight end Tony Gonzalez didn't catch his first pass until the third quarter, a 7-yard grab with 2:03 left.