2017 Pre-season/Regular Season Schedule

Saw a Monday Night Football game at old Three Rivers in the Holmgren era. We got our butt kicked. Steelers fans ribbed us in our Packer jerseys, but they're a smart group like Packer fans who've tasted enough success over the years to have a decent perspective. Eagles fans--not so much in that particular area. One Super Bowl, last championship in 1960?

Tdog posted:

radio guys said this morning ESPN is running a TWO HOUR special on the release of the 2017 schedule.   good gawd, that oughta be enough hot air to get a balloon to the moon.
and as a friend said:  They should have the whole season figured out by the end of that show so let's start thinking about the 2018 draft.

The key point being it's not The Wizard's fault.  

I traveled to Pittsburgh 1 week per month from 2002-2003 for business - Alcoa contract. I went to many Pirates games at PNC and caught a couple Steelers games at Heinz. Both stadiums are right on the river across from downtown PIT and easy walking distance from the hotels. Personally I never had a bad experience at either park, but saw some fans who had the alcohol bravado, and they were dealt with. Went to a few Brewers/Pirates games, but never caught the Packers at Heinz (I don't believe they played each other those years). Caught an OT game with CLE, that was entertaining! Two knowledgeable fan basis, and there was lots of good give and take. 

Hungry5 posted:

I traveled to Pittsburgh 1 week per month from 2002-2003 for business - Alcoa contract. I went to many Pirates games at PNC and caught a couple Steelers games at Heinz. Both stadiums are right on the river across from downtown PIT and easy walking distance from the hotels. Personally I never had a bad experience at either park, but saw some fans who had the alcohol bravado, and they were dealt with. Went to a few Brewers/Pirates games, but never caught the Packers at Heinz (I don't believe they played each other those years). Caught an OT game with CLE, that was entertaining! Two knowledgeable fan basis, and there was lots of good give and take. 

And that's really the tragedy of Cleveland.  Truly a football town with a good fan base and they are subjected to **** after Modell screwed them.  All these other teams moving?  Just not in the same ballpark.  A bunch of fair weather teams / fanbases that will continue to bounce.  

So the Schedule has been released and we finally, FINALLY, have something to actually talk about. Every year, I take a look at the schedule and try to post my thoughts. Things that jump out at me. No need for ceremony. Here we go:

-- Green Bay doesn't have a noon kickoff until Week 6 (though Week 5 starts flex scheduling I believe).

-- Green Bay has five nationally televised games again including a Saturday night edition of Sunday Night Football in Week 16.

-- They are on Sunday Night Football three times.

-- They play the Bears on Thursday for the third straight year.

-- They open the season with back to back games with major playoff implications. Seattle and Atlanta are both favorites in their divisions.

-- There are no three game stretches of home or away.

-- Three of the four AFC North games come between Weeks 11-14.

-- The team gets a mini-bye week before playing Dallas in Week 5 after playing Chicago on TNF.

-- They get a home field advantage for TNF, and are at home the week before TNF for a double advantage. Tough test for Chicago.

-- McCarthy Likes to view the schedule in quarters. The second quarter has five weeks this year.

-- The 1st quarter features three home games and two nationally televised games.

-- The 2nd quarter has two home and two away.

-- The 3rd quarter also has two home and two away.

-- The 4th quarter has three away games.

-- There is no January game. Green Bay plays five games in December and only three games in October.

-- Following Week 9, Green Bay plays on six straight Sundays.

-- Green Bay plays on short rest three times, vs. Chicago in Week 3, at Chicago in Week 10, and vs. Minnesota in Week 16.

-- The short rest game against Chicago is extra short as Green Bay has a 3:25 kickoff against Cincy the Week before. Players will be home by 8PM that Sunday and have less than 96 hours before playing Chicago.

-- Green Bay plays on long rest three times as well, vs. Dallas in Week 5, vs. Detroit in Week 9 which gives them an extra long bye week), and at Detroit in Week 17.

-- Green Bay gets long rest both times they play Detroit.

-- Green Bay's divisional contests are in Weeks 4, 6, 9, 10, 16, 17.

-- Green Bay's longest stretch without a divisional game is from Week 10 to Week 16.

-- A win in Week 3 means Aaron Rodgers will have beaten all 31 other teams. A highly exclusive club (only two QBs have beaten all 32, Peyton Manning and Brett Favre).

-- A win in Week 4 gives Green Bay the all-time series lead against Chicago.

-- The QBs Green Bay faces are:

Wilson Ryan Dalton Glennon Prescott Bradford Brees Stafford Glennon Flacco Roethlisberger Winston Browns QB Newton Bradford Stafford

-- Green Bay plays only one team with a likely QB competition. Cleveland.

-- Green Bay plays four Super Bowl winning quarterbacks in Brees, Flacco, Roethlisberger and Wilson.

-- Only one opponent of Green Bay's final five made the playoffs in 2016 (the Lions).

-- The schedule maker does not view Chicago as a division contender as they complete their home and home against Green Bay in Week 10.

-- Baltimore and Cincinnati will not play in Green Bay again until the 2025 regular season.

-- Week 3 vs. Cincy and Week 9 vs. Detroit are the Gold Package games with County Stadium fans getting two late kickoffs this year.

-- Green Bay has only 8 noon kickoffs this year (subject to flexing).

-- Green Bay plays two teams off their bye weeks: at Bears in Week 10 and vs. Ravens in Week 11.

-- The farthest west Green Bay plays in 2017 is Dallas.

-- Easiest schedule stretch travel wise is from Week 7 to Week 11, Green Bay has three home games, an away game in Chicago and a bye week. It features three noon kickoffs and the lone exception if MNF off the bye home against Detroit.

-- Toughest travel stretch is Week 12 to Week 17 featuring 6 games with 4 away games. The away games are Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Carolina and Detroit with Cleveland and Carolina back to back before Minnesota on a short week and then Detroit in Week 17 away.

-- Green Bay in this decade typically hit the afterburners in November and December. They play half their conference schedule in September and October however including potential tiebreaker games against Dallas, Atlanta, and Seattle.

-- The first half of the schedule features 8 weeks, the bye week, 4 home games and 3 away games.

-- The second half of the schedule features 9 weeks, 5 away games, and 4 home games.

That's all that immediately jumps out at me. Feel free to add more below.

Now for my top five games of 2017:

-- 5. Week 1 vs. Seattle

This is the NFL's best current non-division rivalry. These are perreniel playoff contenders and they hate each other. It started with the Fail Mary. Then Seattle stunned Green Bay in the NFC Championship game in 2014. Since then Green Bay has beaten Seattle twice, utterly pummeling them from the contender discussion. Russell Wilson looks utterly lost against Capers' defenses. Both teams are division favorites and there's added flavor with new Seahawks guard Eddie Lacy playing against his old team.

-- 4. Week 12 at Pittsburgh

Only once every eight years does Green Bay travel to Pitt and only once every four years does Green Bay play Pittsburgh in the regular season. They've not had a bad contest under McCarthy. Mccarthy returns home and plays the team he beat to win a Super Bowl. We get Rodgers against Roethlisberger, two hall of fame QBs. We get two monster offenses against two defenses trying to grow. For a non-conference game it comes in Week 12 and could have major implications. It's also the Sunday night of Thanksgiving Weekend and leftover food for snacks sounds amazing.

-- 3. Week 2 at Atlanta

Green Bay has a truly brutal first three weeks of the season playing three contending teams. Green Bay also opens its second stadium for the second year straight and plays the team that committed straight up murder of Green Bay on national television in the NFC Championship game. Atlanta humiliated a completely outmatched Green Bay defense and if fans want this game to be payback it doesn't feel like it. Even if the defense ends the season strong, they won't be enough better by this game. A Sunday Night Football shootout is the best the team can hope for and it's likely what we'll get.

-- 2. Week 16 vs. Minnesota

Call me crazy but I actually think Minnesota is the bigger division threat to Green bay than Detroit. This is a Christmas weekend Game and nationally televised. These teams know each other well. Green Bay comes off a long road trip to Carolina and is on a short week. I think the schedule maker is fooling us with the Detroit game. This one looks like what they think could be for all the chimichongas.

-- 1. Week 5 at Dallas

This is a rematch of the best game in the NFL last season and if you think this game wasn't the best one out of the 267 that were played last year you are provably wrong (and if you say the Super Bowl you need to sew your mouth shut. That game sucked up until God decided Atlanta hadn't been punished enough since Sherman burnt it to the ground).

The game is a late Sunday kickoff, a classic afternoon game. It's in October. As a downside it does take place in AT&T Field (which is the worst stadium in pro football, and if you disagree you are also provable wrong. How you have bad sightlines in a stadium built for football is utterly beyond me).

Both teams feature turbocharged V10 offenses and defenses that can make enough plays now and then to make it interesting. Zeke Elliot is in his sophomore year, as is Dak Prescott. These two teams are the prohibitive Super Bowl favorites in the NFC along with Atlanta. If you're not already salivating for this contest I don't know what to tell you. Dallas will be aching for payback and Green Bay has actually fared really well in AT&T stadium over the years since it has been built. Also Packers and Cowboys fans hate each other (at least younger ones do. Older fans have a weird incestuous love for the Cowboys because they were always on TV). This is the best game of the year.

Now for things that annoy me about this schedule.

-- I think I alluded to it earlier that I think the schedule maker is trying to make things hard on Green Bay by putting so many important games before they typically get their team in sync. That said, September teams look nothing like November or December or January teams and it's impossible to project how the season will go.

Putting Dallas and Atlanta and Seattle and at Minnesota all in the first six weeks robs fans of a lot of potential intrigue in November and December because we won't know the playoff implications till after the fact. September football also just isn't very good. Officials are calling lots of penalties to set the tone for points of emphasis, offenses aren't in sync and defenses make tons of mistakes. It's a waste.

-- I also don't like that Green Bay doesn't get a noon kickoff until October 15th against Minnesota. Five straight games kicking off at 3:15 or 7:30 is too many.

-- I think giving Green Bay a TNF game against Chicago the same week as a late kickoff is utterly unfair and borders on dangerous. Giving players less than 96 hours from game end of Week 3 to kickoff of Week 4 is ridiculous. The sooner the NFL eliminates TNF the better.

-- After how good the Chicago games have been in December the last few years, I'm disappointed we don't get one this year. I get that Cutler is gone but even bad Bears teams have played Green Bay close.

-- I know this isn't on the NFL schedule maker's radar at all, but I don't like gold package games on Monday Night. I generally find the Green Bay elitist attitude towards gold package holders to be one of the more pathetic traits in this fan base as the gold package helped keep this team afloat. On the other hand, reality is reality. Most gold package holders are facing a 2-3 hour drive home after the game and with a 7:30 Monday Night kickoff, those going to the game need to either leave early or face the prospect of getting home at 2 AM or later. This is the kind of thing that gets fans to sell their tickets.

-- A corrollary to the point about so many good games being in the first half of the year. November and December are littered with relatively meaningless games. In November and December we have games against Chicago, Tampa, and Carolina, three teams unlikely to be division contenders. We also have games against Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Cleveland, games in the opposite conference. In November and December the only games against major NFC players (at least from the looks of it now) are the Detroit games and the Minnesota game. It's just a stupid setup.

In conclusion, those are my general thoughts on the schedule. Honestly, despite finishing this piece with annoyances, I generally really love it. There's a ton of great games, we get 5 national games and a bunch of late kickoffs. We get a midseason bye week and finally open Week 1 at home. There's parity in home and away games. The division games are spread out. There's no terribly unfair scheduling quirks and travel is really manageable. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this.

 

"-- I know this isn't on the NFL schedule maker's radar at all, but I don't like gold package games on Monday Night."

 

Another reason why I didn't renew this year. It has been several years in a row with a night game. At least an hours drive after the game for a reasonable rate on a hotel.

GBFanForLife posted:

"-- I know this isn't on the NFL schedule maker's radar at all, but I don't like gold package games on Monday Night."

I'd like to see the breakdown of tickets sold to out-of-towners (usually visitor's fans) by Green package vs. Gold.

My family is from GB and has season tickets so it pains me to say it, but I wouldn't be surprised if more Green package holders give up their tickets than Gold.  A lot of season ticket holders use their season tickets just to make money by selling them at double or triple the cost.   Gold package holders get fewer games and are less likely to give them up, I bet.

All I know is, I don't like visiting colors in Lambeau.  Unfortunately visiting fans all want to come for the "Lambeau experience" and season ticket holders are all-too-willing to oblige them.  

You know it's getting bad when towards the end of last season McCarthy went out of his way to mention it in a presser and encouraged ticket holders not to do it. 

The last couple years there were a lot of visiting team fans during the Gold Package games. I rarely had the same people next to me even if they were Green Bay fans. For me it just got to the point it wasn't worth the hassle. The Packers buying up all the land around the stadium eliminated thousands of parking spots that in turn caused the prices to go up for parking in someones yard. With the schedule release show the hotels jack up the room rates early. I used to go online  as soon as the schedule was released and book rooms before they were jacked up. Even the Best Western in Chilton started jacking their rates up.

Also Packers and Cowboys fans hate each other (at least younger ones do. Older fans have a weird incestuous love for the Cowboys because they were always on TV).

I'm 57, fu*king hate the Cowboys and their dipsh!t fans. Back in the 70's, which is what I expect this is referring to, I rooted for the Steelers when they beat Dallas in the Super Bowls that decade.

Maybe the writer thinks folks who followed Dallas in the early 90's are older?

YATittle posted:

Saw a Monday Night Football game at old Three Rivers in the Holmgren era. We got our butt kicked. Steelers fans ribbed us in our Packer jerseys, but they're a smart group like Packer fans who've tasted enough success over the years to have a decent perspective. Eagles fans--not so much in that particular area. One Super Bowl, last championship in 1960?

Was that the game where Travis Jervey broke his leg?

Fedya posted:
YATittle posted:

Saw a Monday Night Football game at old Three Rivers in the Holmgren era. We got our butt kicked. Steelers fans ribbed us in our Packer jerseys, but they're a smart group like Packer fans who've tasted enough success over the years to have a decent perspective. Eagles fans--not so much in that particular area. One Super Bowl, last championship in 1960?

Was that the game where Travis Jervey broke his leg?

Yup. Holmgren was coach we saw him in the tunnel before the game and he waved to us. Slash slashed us, we fought back but it was never in doubt that night.

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