Ever since I read a biography of Vince Lombardi, a few years ago, I've taken an interest in the fortunes of the Green Bay Packers. Lombardi was the coach of the Packers in the 1960's, leading them to five championship titles including three in a row and the first two super bowl titles (1966 & 1967).
The trophy for the winner of the super bowl is named in Vince Lombardi's honour; he is a legend in the NFL. A fascinating bloke who didn't get his chance to coach in the NFL until he was 46 but instantly had an impact, turning around the Packers in 1959 to be the super team of the 60's. Sadly he died of cancer in 1970.
The Packers are the third oldest team in the NFL and are based in Green Bay, on the banks of Lake Michigan, a city in Wisconsin.
Green Bay is the smallest city (population of just over 100,000) to host a team in the NFL.
Must be the North Melbourne supporter in me to back a team that on the surface is from a town that shouldn't be able to compete with teams from cities like New York, Chicago, Dallas, San Francisco, Miami, etc.
The most unique and special thing about the Packers is their ownership. The Packers are currently the only non-profit, community-owned professional sports team in the United States. The people of Green Bay are the only people in all of sports who actually own their favorite team.
This team certainly doesn't have an inferiority complex. Despite their small town status, the Packers have remarkably won 12 titles, the most by any team in the NFL. - So much so that Green Bay has been nicknamed 'Title Town'. (See story below)
It entered the NFL play offs as the sixth ranked team in the NFC, having grabbed a wild card spot, after finishing 2nd to the Chicago Bears in the NFC North Divison.
In the first week of the plays offs - 'Wild Card weekend' - the Packers beat the Philadelphia Eagles (where Saverio Rocca is the punter) in Philadelphia.
The top two ranked teams (Atlanta & Chicago) from the NFC get a bye in the first week of the play offs, so after beating the Eagles, the Packers had to go to Atlanta.
Yesterday the Packers smashed the number ranked NFC team, the Atlanta Falcons 48 to 21 in Atlanta. They now face the Chicago Bears in the NFC title game; the winner going to the Super Bowl to play the AFC champions.
Chicago disposed of Seattle Seahawks this morning in the other divisional play off game.
If you think Carlton v Collingwood is big - the rivalry between Chicago & Green Bay is massive and has been for 90 years. It's the biggest rivalry in the NFL. Surprisingly these two teams have never played each other in an NFC play off - until now.
It's on this Sunday, at Soldier Field, the home of the Chicago Bears. Game starts at 3.00pm in Chicago. (8.00am Monday morning, Australian Eastern standrd time.)
Should be a cracker!
Last edited by youngy on Mon Jan 17, 2011 2:00 pm; edited 1 time in total