Discussion Board
Welcome Guest! You can login or register. Login or Register.

Options
Go to last post Go to first unread
walleye  
#1 Posted : Saturday, September 6, 2008 6:37:02 PM(UTC)
For only the second time in franchise history, the Packers will open up their season at Lambeau Field on Monday Night Football. That the first game of '08 comes against a chief division rival only adds to the excitement level.

Green Bay's only other season-opener at home on MNF came on Sept. 1, 1997, against the Chicago Bears when the Packers were the defending Super Bowl champions.

Now the Packers are the reigning NFC North Division champions, and host a Minnesota Vikings team that many believe will provide the biggest challenge in the division this year, on a prime-time stage no less.

"It's big for us," wide receiver Donald Driver said. "This is a rival game that we know that everyone is watching, especially on Monday Night Football. No one else is playing football but us, so we've got to show the world."

Last year the Packers won both games against the Vikings for the first time since '04, including the first shutout in the history of the series with a 34-0 win at Lambeau in November.

Since Mike McCarthy took over as head coach in 2006, the Packers have won all four games against Minnesota, and the four-game winning streak is their first since sweeping Minnesota in 1987 and '88. With a win on Monday, Green Bay would post its first five-game streak against the Vikings since 1983-85.

A storyline was added this offseason when the Packers filed tampering charges against the Vikings regarding their contact with then-retired quarterback Brett Favre. The NFL dismissed the allegations in an early August ruling.

"It's about the players that are on the football field playing the game," Vikings head coach Brad Childress said. "The rivalry is the rivalry. I don't think people live in a vacuum, however. It's a North Division rivalry and we're playing the champions of the North.

"Obviously it means a little bit more because anytime you can beat a division opponent you get another game up in the NFC but you also do on a divisional opponent."

The two teams have clearly been the class of the division in recent years, with either the Packers or the Vikings capturing the Central/North Division title 10 of the last 14 years.

"This is a very, very good way for us to start the season," defensive end Aaron Kampman said. "It's a great challenge and they've continued to improve, as we have, so it should be a great, great battle on Monday night."

The Vikings, who finished second in the division behind Green Bay last season with an 8-8 record, made perhaps the most notable offseason acquisition in the league, adding NFL-sack leader Jared Allen in a trade with the Kansas City Chiefs to an already formidable defense. The offense features last year's NFC-leading rusher, Pro Bowl running back Adrian Peterson.

"We're been waiting for this for a long time," defensive tackle Ryan Pickett said. "This whole offseason we have been talking about this game, so we're very excited to showcase we can do. We want to be the No. 1 defense in the NFL this year, so it starts off if we can make a statement this week."

The teams also have a great deal of familiarity from facing each other twice a season, including players and coaches that have been on both sides of the rivalry. Vikings offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell spent six seasons (2000-05) on Green Bay's staff before joining Minnesota, and safety Darren Sharper (1997-2004), kicker Ryan Longwell (1997-2005) and wide receiver Robert Ferguson (2001-06) all began their careers in Green Bay.

"We know them well and they know us well," cornerback Charles Woodson said. "We know their personnel. It will be a fun game, a tough game, and it's a Monday night game. This will show how people act under the lights.

"This is the biggest and brightest during the season, the Monday night game, so we'll definitely see where we are at as a football team going into a tough season."

Green Bay benefited from a fast start in 2007, winning the first four games on their way to a 13-3 record and the division crown. With a schedule that includes six playoff teams from last season, the Packers know the importance of getting out of the gates this year with some success.

Advertisement

"I stay away from saying it is a tone-setter, but I would say that we always want to start fast," Kampman said. "Every season we want to start fast. We're at home, against a rival, a divisional opponent, so those are all things you want to do well against obviously."

While admitting that he couldn't think of a better way to open up the season, quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who will be making his first career start, was one of several players who said it is a little too early to gauge how the pecking order in the division will stack up based on just one game.

"It's the first game and a lot can happen during the season," Rodgers said. "There are injuries, momentum swings. You can get on a hot streak as a team, like the Giants did last year.

"The first game is good to see where you are at individually, but it takes really six, seven, eight weeks to see how a division is going to shape up."

Even though it is only the first game of a long season, the Vikings' Allen, who will be one of a handful of players on the field experiencing the rivalry for the first time Monday night, echoed the same feelings that many Packers players expressed this week as they looked ahead to the border battle.

"I think the more emotion you can put into a game, especially from the fans' standpoint, it just makes the game that much more fun," Allen said.

"Monday Night Football is always a fun game, and when you've got these kinds of rivalries, the atmosphere always gets cranked up another level. This is why we play football as football players."
Rss Feed
Users browsing this topic
Guest
Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.

Notification

Icon
Error

Fan Shout
Zero2Cool (3h) : players picked from Nos. 1 to 21 in the first round receive fully guaranteed contracts.
beast (19h) : Rumor is that Richie Incognito wants to retire, he just wanted to be released first so that he didn't have to play back any of his signing bonus.
Zero2Cool (20h) : Bills have released G Richie Incognito -->>> ?? Packers?
Mucky Tundra (20h) : or very shortly after being drafted
Mucky Tundra (20h) : from reading about it, sounds like he went to rehab before even being drafted
Mucky Tundra (20h) : didn't know about the other two stints
Zero2Cool (21h) : favre went into rehab three times, ... i didn't know that and i thought i knew everything. WTF
Zero2Cool (21-May) : ass fuck? you sick bastid
Nonstopdrivel (20-May) : Not that I've . . . ASS! FUCK!
Nonstopdrivel (20-May) : Not that I've noticed. Noticed. Iced.
Cheesey (20-May) : Hey Nonstop.....do you know you have a history of repeating yourself?
Cheesey (20-May) : Hey Nonstop...do you know you have a history of repeating yourself?
Nonstopdrivel (19-May) : Reading Melt74's posting history is pretty funny. There aren't many members more laconic than he.
Nonstopdrivel (19-May) : Reading Melt74's posting history is pretty funny. There aren't many members more laconic than he.
wpr (19-May) : Wie gehts?
Porforis (18-May) : Guten tag.
Nonstopdrivel (18-May) : Gute . . . use your aggressive feelings, boy. Let the hate flow through you.
Porforis (18-May) : I am Gute.
Zero2Cool (18-May) : That is gute.
gbguy20 (15-May) : nvm just read about it. KT coffee is now the official coffee of the packers and will be served at Lambeau. taking over naming rights of the Verizon wireless gate and much more. sweet.
gbguy20 (15-May) : what's the details on the packers w/ kwik trip, Kevin?
Zero2Cool (15-May) : Packers & @KwikTrip expand & enhance their partnership
Zero2Cool (15-May) : Packers have signed first-round pick Jaire Alexander.
Zero2Cool (15-May) : Jason Witten, who also listed the Saints as a landing spot.
Zero2Cool (15-May) : “I think he’s going to end up going to the Green Bay Packers.” Jason Witten to @AdamSchefter about Dez Bryant.
Zero2Cool (14-May) : Marshall Newhouse ✔ @MNewhouse73 Hey, Legalize sports gambling all you want, but there’s no true gamble quite like whether to trust a fart or not.
KRK (13-May) : capitals and jets
Zero2Cool (13-May) : PackersHome*
buckeyepackfan (13-May) : Happy Mothers Day to all The Packershome Mom's out there!
Zero2Cool (13-May) : Penguins.
TheKanataThrilla (13-May) : Jet and Preds were an amazing series. Too bad one team had to lose.
TheKanataThrilla (13-May) : I was on Jets and Preds when my Senators decided to suck all year.
TheKanataThrilla (13-May) : Who are people cheering for to win the Stanley Cup?
TheKanataThrilla (13-May) : My son's team
TheKanataThrilla (13-May) : Sorry Zero. I am giving my wife a Penguins shirt for Mother's day.
Please sign in to use Fan Shout
2018 Packers Schedule
Sunday, Sep 9 @ 7:20 PM
BEARS
Sunday, Sep 16 @ 12:00 PM
VIKINGS
Sunday, Sep 23 @ 12:00 PM
Redskins
Sunday, Sep 30 @ 12:00 PM
BILLS
Sunday, Oct 7 @ 12:00 PM
Lions
Monday, Oct 15 @ 7:15 PM
49ERS
Sunday, Oct 28 @ 3:25 PM
Rams
Sunday, Nov 4 @ 7:20 PM
Patriots
Sunday, Nov 11 @ 12:00 PM
DOLPHINS
Thursday, Nov 15 @ 7:20 PM
Seahawks
Sunday, Nov 25 @ 7:20 PM
Vikings
Sunday, Dec 2 @ 12:00 PM
CARDINALS
Sunday, Dec 9 @ 12:00 PM
FALCONS
Sunday, Dec 16 @ 12:00 PM
Bears
Sunday, Dec 23 @ 12:00 PM
Jets
Sunday, Dec 30 @ 12:00 PM
LIONS
Think About It
Think About It
Recent Topics
15m / Green Bay Packers Talk / Zero2Cool

42m / Green Bay Packers Talk / Cheesey

2h / Green Bay Packers Talk / beast

2h / Green Bay Packers Talk / Zero2Cool

21h / Green Bay Packers Talk / DoddPower

20-May / Green Bay Packers Talk / KRK

19-May / Random Babble / Nonstopdrivel

19-May / Green Bay Packers Talk / nyrpack

17-May / Green Bay Packers Talk / nerdmann

16-May / Green Bay Packers Talk / Porforis

15-May / Green Bay Packers Talk / DarkaneRules

13-May / Random Babble / KRK

13-May / Green Bay Packers Talk / KRK

13-May / Green Bay Packers Talk / beast

12-May / Green Bay Packers Talk / TheKanataThrilla

Headlines