Does losing really hurt more than winning feels good? I’m not sure, but the Green Bay Packers have had plenty of sweet wins and tough losses against their NFC North foes just since the turn of the century.
Best Win: Week 17, 2013
You really only need three beautiful words to describe this win: “He’s got Cobb.” Preferably, you’d picture those words being screamed in Larry McCarren’s gravelly voice.
After an agonizing stretch with Aaron Rodgers on the shelf with a broken collarbone, the Packers entered Week 17 of the 2013 season needing a win over the Bears to secure the NFC North and a playoff game. Thanks to an all-around good game from Jordy Nelson, a timely block from John Kuhn, and an iconic toss from Rodgers to Randall Cobb, they got it.
Worst Loss: Week 12, 2015
The Packers’ Thanksgiving Night loss to the Bears was one of the lower points in an altogether disappointing 2015 season.
It was supposed to be the moment the Packers and Brett Favre finally buried the hatchet. Favre’s jersey was to be retired at halftime and Bart Starr was in the building for a visit. But instead of a celebration, Packers fans were treated to 60 minutes of joyless, sparkless football. Aaron Rodgers managed just 202 yards on 43 passing attempts as the Packers came up short on what should have been a great night. (Bonus heartbreak: a Packers win would have tied the all-time series between the two teams, and the Packers would have to wait another year to knot up that record.)
Best Win: Week 8, 2013
The Metrodome was a miserable dump of a stadium, and the Packers had no shortage of trouble in that cramped, outdated building over the years. But in their last trip before the dome was rightfully bulldozed, the Packers did their part to destroy the building, too.
Other than a drive that started with four seconds remaining in the first half and the one that ended with the Packers kneeling out the clock, the Packers scored on every single possession. Micah Hyde threw in a 90-yard punt return touchdown to boot as the Packers eviscerated the Vikings in a 44-31 romp that wasn’t half as close as the final score indicated.
Worst Loss: Week 8, 2009
I still have a hard time believing this actually happened.
Brett Favre came to Lambeau Field as a member of the Vikings and threw four touchdowns to beat the Packers. It sounds more like a bad dream than something that actually happened. And yet.
Best Win: Week 13, 2015
If you were so inclined, you could easily put the Packers’ wins over the Lions to cap off either the 2016 or 2019 seasons here, but it’s hard for me to beat the memory of Richard Rodgers’ Hail Mary catch in Detroit.
The Rodgers-to-Rodgers toss was the finishing touch on a remarkable comeback. The Packers trailed 20-0 at one point in the second half and were down 23-14 with just over seven minutes left in the fourth quarter before the comeback began.
Worst Loss: Week 17, 2018
A strange but true fact: the Packers have only lost five games by 30 or more points since 2000, and the Lions are responsible for two of those five. One was a 40-10 thrashing on Thanksgiving Day in 2013, the other a 31-0 shutout to end the 2018 season.
I think the 2018 loss was a bit worse for a few reasons. First, Aaron Rodgers was out with a broken collarbone in 2013, and the Packers ultimately did dust themselves off late that year and made the playoffs (see the Bears win above), so that season was better on the whole. Second, the 2018 loss started with Rodgers leaving a game he probably shouldn’t have been playing in with a concussion. And finally, getting shut out by the Lions at Lambeau Field is just embarrassing.