Ironically enough, it was a FanPost at The Falcoholic that gave me the idea to do these posts in the first place. WIth this week being the Packers-Falcons game, I figured I'd give a little shout-out to where the credit is due.
Anyway, it is midweek again, and that means it is time for our next history lesson. In this week's post, we take a look at the Packers' history against the Atlanta Falcons. Currently, the Packers lead the regular season series 14-12. The Packers also hold a 2-1 edge in postseason play as well.
The Falcons entered the NFL in the expansion era in 1966. That first year, they lost to the Packers 56-3. The Packers continued beating the Falcons throughout the rest of the 1960s, and indeed, the Phil Bengston Packers posted a 3-0 mark over the Falcons.
In 1971, however, the Falcons finally defeated the Packers. They repeated this feat in 1972 and 1974, before the Packers finally got their number again in 1975 and 1976. After another Falcons victory in 1979, the teams met in Lambeau Field early in the 1981 season. After three quarters of play, the Packers led 17-0. The fourth quarter, however, was an epic nightmare for Packers fans. The Falcons scored again and again, and the final score of the game was Atlanta 31, Green Bay 17.
The Packers answered right back by routing the Falcons in Atlanta in 1982, but then, in 1983, the teams met for the first overtime game of the series. The game went back and forth, but ultimately, the Falcons won, 47-41, in overtime.
Throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s, the home team won every game in the series. After the 1991 season, the teams completed a trade that sent a young Brett Favre to Green Bay for a draft pick. The trade ended up being a steal for the Packers. Although Favre did lose his first game against the Falcons, the foundation was set for enduring competitiveness in Green Bay that had not existed since the 1960s.
In 1994, the Packers clinched a playoff berth with Favre running around right end to score the game-winning touchdown himself with only seconds to play. It was a fitting end to the Packers' games in Milwaukee, as this would be the last Packers game ever played in Milwaukee. A year later, the Packers and Falcons met for their first playoff game. The Packers won, 37-20, and advanced to face the San Francisco 49ers in the divisional round. The Packers and Falcons did not meet again for several years.
In 2001, after a road win over the Chicago Bears, the Packers came home against the Falcons, and fell flat at Lambeau Field, losing 23-20 and losing safety Leroy Butler to a career-ending injury. A year later, in the 2002 season opener, the Packers edged the Falcons 37-34, in overtime, capping a wild back-and-forth game. That season, however, ended in terrible fashion as the Packers dropped a clunker to the Falcons at Lambeau Field, losing 27-7 to the Falcons for their first-ever playoff loss at home.
The Packers defeated the Falcons in 2005, but in 2008, the Falcons came back to Lambeau Field and won again, 27-24, with rookie quarterback Matt Ryan leading the way despite a tremendous effort from Aaron Rodgers.
In 2010, Rodgers and Ryan went at it again, with Ryan coming away the winner as the Falcons kicked a last-second field goal to defeat the Packers, 20-17. The teams, however, would play each other a second time in Atlanta that season in the playoffs. The Packers trailed early, but got their footing on both sides of the ball by the end of the second quarter. The game turned into a clinic for the Packers offense, and when all was said and done, the Packers had set a record for most points scored in a single playoff game. The Packers won, 48-21, and continued the momentum through to the Super Bowl victory over Pittsburgh.
The teams met in Atlanta a third time the next October. The Packers spotted the Falcons an early 14-0 lead, but fought back, eventually winning going away, 25-14 and improving to 5-0 overall. The most recent game was at Lambeau Field in the middle of the Packers' November 2013 swoon. The Falcons came into Lambeau Field, and at halftime, held a 21-10 lead. Green Bay fought back, however, and would eventually eke out a 22-21 victory. This win helped set the Packers on their wild ride at the end of the 2013 season, which eventually ended with Green Bay winning the NFC North Championship.
What are your memories of the Packers facing the Falcons?
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