By Larry Fine
EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey (Reuters) - The New York Giants came out firing after a week off, routing the Green Bay Packers 38-10 on Sunday to break a two-game losing skid and strengthen their hold on the NFC East.
Quarterback Eli Manning, who had thrown one touchdown pass and six interceptions in his last four games, had renewed zip on his deliveries as he threw for three touchdowns and surpassed Phil Simms as the team's all-time leader with 200 TD passes.
The Super Bowl champion Giants improved to 7-4 to extend their division lead to two games over the Dallas Cowboys (5-6) and Washington Redskins (5-6), who they play next week.
Visiting Green Bay dropped to 7-4 and a game behind the Chicago Bears (8-3) in the NFC North, although they were the leading team in the standings among wildcard hopefuls.
New York, caught in one of their familiar mid-season slumps, came alive in a showdown between the last two Super Bowl winners and fueled hope of a run at back-to-back titles.
Manning directed a balanced attack in which the Giants gained 249 yards through the air and 147 yards on the ground with Andre Brown gaining 64 yards and Ahmad Bradshaw rushing for 58, both of them running for touchdowns.
Giants pass rushers had five sacks against Rodgers, with Osi Umenyiora's causing a fumble recovered by Jason Pierre-Paul.
Cornerback Corey Webster intercepted a pass by Rodgers, who had only been picked off six times previously this season.
Manning hit Victor Cruz and rookie Rueben Randle with touchdown strikes in the first half as New York rolled to a 31-10 lead.
He then connected with Hakeem Nicks for a 16-yard touchdown in the third quarter to put him past Simms on the Giants' all-time list.
The teams traded touchdowns on their first possessions of the game, giving the impression that a high-scoring game was to come.
However, it was the Giants who accounted for 31 of the last 34 points against a potential post-season opponent.
Manning completed 16-of-30 passes without an interception, while Rodgers was 14-of-25 for 219 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
(Reporting by Larry Fine; Editing by Alastair Himmer)
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