AP Photo/Mike Roemer Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre reacts after throwing a 10-yard touchdown pass to Javon Walker in the second quarter against the St. Louis Rams Monday in Green Bay, Wis.
AP Photo/Mike Roemer
GREEN BAY, Wis. The governor proclaimed it ''Brett Favre Day,'' and the night belonged to the quarterback, too.
Favre celebrated his 200th straight regular-season start with three touchdown passes and yet another record in the Green Bay Packers' 45-17 rout of the St. Louis Rams on Monday night.
Favre topped 20 touchdown passes for the 11th straight season, breaking a tie with Dan Marino on a 7-yard toss to tight end Bubba Franks in the second quarter. He also threw touchdown passes to Javon Walker and Donald Driver as the Packers (7-4) got two defensive touchdowns and won their sixth straight to keep pace with Minnesota atop the NFC North.
Favre didn't have his co-star, Ahman Green, who was out with injured ribs. But Najeh Davenport came up with a strong imitation, gaining 178 yards on 19 carries in his first NFL start even though he had two sore hamstrings.
Davenport said after the fifth-highest single-game rushing total in franchise history that he was just glad to be a part of Favre's memorable milestone.
''Brett Favre is unbelievable. It's a great honor to play with him,'' Davenport said. ''Who knows how long he's going to be around ... He's like an old man, but he's young at heart.''
Marc Bulger threw for more yards 448 against Green Bay than any quarterback ever had, completing 35 of 53 passes, but he was overshadowed by Favre and St. Louis (5-6) missed a chance to tie Seattle atop the NFC's woeful West.
''Any time you play against Brett Favre, you're not going to get the spotlight,'' Bulger said. ''It was his night.''
Isaac Bruce caught nine passes for 170 yards and a touchdown but his two fumbles were returned for touchdowns, one by rookie Ahmad Carroll to start the scoring and one by Michael Hawthorne to cap the rout in the final minute.
Bruce's 4-yard TD catch just before halftime brought St. Louis to 21-10, and in the third quarter the Rams benefited from a new rule this year that allows the coach to call a timeout from the sideline when Mike Martz's timeout negated a lost fumble by Steven Jackson.
But Martz followed up with a questionable call a fake field goal when a 42-yarder by Jeff Wilkins would have made it a one-possession game. Wilkins was stuffed 12 yards shy of the first down on fourth-and-7.
''We didn't make it, so I wish we hadn't done it,'' Martz said. ''I felt like we needed the points. We had to keep our offense in there the way we had to pursue them.''
Not only did the Rams get nothing out of a nearly eight-minute drive, but the Packers went 71 yards in four plays, capped by Driver's leaping 16-yard touchdown catch that gave Green Bay a 28-10 lead.
Bulger's 8-yard TD toss to Marshall Faulk made it 28-17, but the Rams never got any closer.
Davenport capped his night with a 40-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-1 with 1:52 left to make it 38-17.
Favre's record streak of starts moved to 219, counting playoffs, and is almost 100 more than Ron Jaworski's previous NFL quarterback mark of 123.
Joey Thomas forced a fumble on the Rams' first possession, and Carroll, a fellow rookie cornerback, picked it up and ran 40 yards for his first career touchdown. It was the Packers' first recovery of an opponent's fumble since Sept. 19 against Chicago.
Carroll also recorded his first career interception on a pass in the end zone that was intended for Bruce early in the third quarter.
''Both the pick and the TD mean the same to me because they were huge plays for our team,'' Carroll said.
In the final minute, Darren Sharper stripped the ball from Bruce and Hawthorne returned it 34 yards for the score.
Favre took over for an injured Don Majkowski on Sept. 27, 1992. Since then, 11 of his backups have gone on to start for another team. Last week, Eli Manning became the 178th quarterback to have started a game in the NFL since Favre last came off the bench.
The Rams have had 13 quarterbacks in that span.
''Considering the position he plays and the number of injuries at quarterback around the league, I think it's quite a feat,'' Packers president Bob Harlan said. ''He can be on crutches in the middle off the week and he always runs out there on Sunday.''
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