A Green Bay Packers bye week
can lead to a really dull Sunday. But,
can doesn't necessarily mean will. It's
all what you do with that free time.
WTMJ in Milwaukee, the Packers Flagship radio station, usually runs an old radio broadcast of a classic game on a bye week. There have been some really cool games that they picked over the years. But, WTMJ is also the University of Wisconsin Flagship station. Since there was a men's basketball game on Sunday, there was no classic Packers game on the radio.
So, I decided to discover the joys of research and it led to something that was interesting to me.
As I put it on twitter: Meaningless stat to keep in mind for 11/11/13 (if the Pack play on Monday Night) or 11/11/18. Packers are 7-0 on 11/11 since 1962.
That's the stat I found. The Packers have won all seven games they have played on November 11 since 1962. The last Packers loss on Veterans Day was in 1956. The discovery of this little bit of information made a rainy day a bit better.
And it wasn't just finding that info. It was the memories of names and players and seasons past that come flooding back when you look at the boxscores. That and the item that the Packers should obviously play the Minnesota Vikings on Veterans Day as you will see as you move on down the list.
The only Veterans Day win that is not in my lifetime is the first. November 11, 1962. That would be the Lombardi Era or LOMBARDI ERA as it is known.
11/11/1962: Packers 49, Philadelphia Eagles 0 at Franklin Field in Philadelphia
When you hear Lombardi Era Packers, what is the first thing that springs to mind? Is it the sweep? Is it Ray Nitschke and Herb Adderley on defense? Is it Paul Hornung, Jim Taylor, and Bart Starr on offense?
I thought of all of those names and images.
Jim Taylor's name immediately popped out of the boxscore. He had 25 carries for 141 yards and FOUR touchdowns. Do you think Jim Taylor would have been a big pick fantasy football in 1962?
Max McGee caught seven passes for 174 yards in that game. Bart Starr only threw 20 passes, but completed 15.
The weird thing about this boxscore is that four other Packers threw passes in that game. Hornung was 2-for-2. John Roach was 1-for-5. Elijah Pitts was 0-for-1. Tom Moore was 1-for-3 for 25 yards. Moore also threw the only touchdown pass of the game.
Also, Packers fans remember this, but Jerry Kramer was the place-kicker for the 1962 Packers. He was 7-for-7 on extra point attempts.
This win moved the Packers to 9-0 on the season.
11/11/1973: Packers 25, St. Louis Cardinals 21 at Lambeau Field
John Brockington carried the Green Bay Packers for his all too short NFL career. The 1972 Packers won the Division on the back of Brockington. He was still at the top of his game in 1973. He had to be.
Jerry Tagge, the Packers quarterback in this game, was 7-for-14 on pass attempts for 67 yards. Tagge had six rushes for one yard. Now, the one yard Tagge picked up in this game was for a touchdown. But, look at those numbers. An NFL quarterback - in an entire game - had six rushing attempts and completed seven passes.
It was a different era.
Speaking of different era, Chester Marcol was the place-kicker for the Packers in 1973. He had successful field goal attempts of nine yards and twelve yards. This was before they moved the goalpost back to the endline of the endzone. But, still. Seriously?
Brockington carried the ball 28 times for 137 yards and a touchdown for the winning team to move the Packers to 3-4-2 on the season.
11/11/1979: Packers 19, Minnesota Vikings 7 at Milwaukee County Stadium
Look at the David Whitehurst stat line from this game. He was 11-for-19 for 147 yards with two touchdowns and THREE interceptions. Kicker Tom Birney missed two extra point attempts. To paraphrase Ron Burgundy - I'm not mad. I'm amazed that the Packers won this game.
Running back Terdell Middleton was a big part of the win. He was 27 carries for 135 yards. He also caught a five yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter to put the Pack up 19-0.
The key score in the game belonged to the defense. Mike Butler ran back a fumble 70 yards for a touchdown to make it 13-0 in the second quarter.
Green Bay "improved" to 4-7 with this win.
11/11/84: Packers 45, Minnesota Vikings 17 at Lambeau Field at Milwaukee County Stadium
Lynn Dickey's name most be spoken in reverence around the trailer. He was awesome in a way that no Packers quarterback was in my lifetime. This game was a highlight reel for him: 22-for-40 for 303 yards and four touchdowns. His touchdown passes were:
7 yards to Paul Coffman
18 yards to Jessie Clark
2 yards to Jessie Clark
63 yards to James Lofton
Add in a two-yard rush by tight end Ed West and call it a satisfying win over the Vikings. Who cares that the Pack moved to 4-7...again... with this win?
Lynn Dickey is awesome. I don't care that he only made the playoffs in a strike-shortened year. He is awesome.
Packers 29, Los Angeles Raiders 16 at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
If there was a game on this list that should have been a loss, it would have been this one. The Raiders had Marcus Allen, Howie Long, and BO JACKSON! The Packers had Darrell Thompson, Matt Brock, and MICHAEL HADDIX.
Green Bay was 3-5 and the Raiders were 6-2 heading into this game. Add in a 13-3 Raiders lead after one quarter and the Veterans Day steak should have ended here. But, it didn't.
Chris Jacke, who booted a field goal in the first quarter, kicked two more field goals in the second. Don Majkowski tossed a 5-yard pass to Vince Workman and the Packers had a 16-16 tie heading into the locker room at halftime.
Jacke kicked his fourth field goal of the game, a 23-yarder, in the third quarter and the Packers were up 19-16.
In the fourth, Majik hit Perry Kemp for a 28-yard touchdown pass and Jacke kicked his FIFTH field goal of the game for the final score.
Majkowski (16-25, 195 yards, 2 TDs, INT) outdueled Jay Schroeder (11-23, 139 yards, 0TD, 3INT).
Haddix (69 yards) and Thompson (14 yards) outgained Allen (17 yards) and Jackson (25 yards).
Matt Brock and Howie Long's each had one sack.
This game was amazing and maybe there was a little of the residual Majik from the 1989 season. It got the Packers to 4-5 for 1990.
11/11/01: Packers 20 at Chicago Bears 12 at Soldier Field
Bears get up early. Packers take the lead. Packers pull away. Bears try to rally. Packers win. It's a common recipe for a Packers-Bears game since about 1992.
In this one, Paul Edinger kicked a couple of field goals for a 6-0 lead in the first half. Ryan Longwell kicked one for the Pack. Then, Bill Schoeder caught a 41-yard pass for a touchdown in the last minute of the first half and the Packers lead.
Edinger got another field goal at the end of the half for a 10-9 score.
In the third, Antonio Freeman made a 9-yard TD reception midway through the third for the Packers and the Bears settled for another Edinger field goal later and it was 17-12 after three.
The game was 20-12 after another Longwell field goal in the fourth.
The Bears got the ball back after a punt with 4:19 to play. They drove to a 1st-and-ten at the Green Bay 15 with less than a minute to go. They failed to score and the Pack won again on Veterans Day.
Packers 34, Minnesota Vikings 0 at Lambeau Field
I was at this game. It was awesome.
The offense was near perfect. #4 threw for 351 yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions. Ryan Grant ran for 119 yards, including a 30 yard TD run. Aaron Rodgers got into the game late and completed both his passes.
The kicking game was on. Mason Crosby hit both his field goal attempts and made all four PATs. Punter Jon Ryan averaged over 50 yards a punt.
The defense held the Vikings to under 250 yards and Kabeer Gjaba-Biamila had two sacks.
The only not awesome things
about the game were: Vikings running
back Adrian Peterson got hurt and former Badgers quarterback Brooks Bollinger
had a really, really bad day directing the Minnesota offense.
One thing led to the other in this case.
The Packers would go to 8-1 on