Brett Favre in ‘There’s Something About Mary‘ is what grabbed me about the Green Bay Packers for him to appear in that scene was just gold. Funnily enough only a couple of weeks later I started watching ‘That 70’s Show‘ and the programme is set in the U.S. state of Wisconsin. Wisconsin is the state which houses the city of Green Bay which meant that it was only a matter of time before I saw one of its many scenes in the show which Packers refer to the team and the community and this one’s my favourite. With a great film and a great TV series establishing themselves in my memory I officially counted myself as a Packers fan in the least conventional fashion. It wasn’t “a great catch” or “a great run” or “a great defense stop” that was ever going to convert me as they help but it tends to be a show or something obscure like that. Fast forward a good 13 years now and its an admiration that is not letting up for I’ve gone as far as buying jerseys, religiously getting Madden like many in the UK get FIFA, getting the 2010 season’s “America’s Game” as well as couple of other bits of merchandise.
One of the aspects that kept me a Packers fan is how Green Bay, Wisconsin is really that “a bit of an American England”. The weather is never a guaranteed success as the likelihood of a weather varied game has to be taken into account. An amazing quote I read from their Head Coach Mike McCarthy, sorry if I can only quote it from the Green Bay Packers Official Facebook Page and then they documented it, but “[American] Football is meant to be played outside. That’s part of the beauty of Lambeau Field, where you have three different ‘seasons’.” – Coach McCarthy. Talking about seasons as in weather or seasons as in scheduled matchups, it doesn’t matter as unlike “dome teams” Lambeau Field has a certain “if [you] can make it here, [you] can make it anywhere“ about it as no better rival than mother nature. Coupled with a feeling of “family, easy-going, wholesome” goings, it all means for a place with little-to-no controversy and if a football player can “keep his nose clean” and “apply himself”, then to become a fan favourite (John Kuuuuuuuuuhn) is a formality.
All in all games like vs. the Texans in last week’s Sunday Night Football seriously hammers home the feeling that “anything is possible with this team” as the Packers were (2-3) against a (5-0) Houston Texans. Some of the same wishful thinking had to be the Superbowl win in 2010 after adding 15 players on Injured Reserve in one of the best stories of “overcoming sporting adversity” that this 26 year old man has ever witnessed. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned a couple of hundred times that those men, not all still with the team such is the way of American Football in the professional era with the salary cap, but a still unforgettable feat.
Week 7 pitted the Packers against the St Louis Rams, in the 3rd game against NFC West opposition but it really was a more straightforward game though the 30-20 scoreline only told half the story. I like to see NFL matches like “I’m one of the judges counting the points to a boxing bout”, with that way to looking at the scoreline it was very telling. Yes it was two quarters a-piece, but the Packers won their quarters by 7 points in the 1st, and another 7 points in the 3rd. The Rams won their two by 3 points in the 2nd, and only 1 point in the 4th which made for a better review. After the Jacksonville Jaguars next week comes the Arizona Cardinals in Week 9 after which the Packers’ horrible season against a defensively stout NFC West will be over, huzzah.