1997 Green Bay Packers Season
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1997 Green Bay Packers Season
1997 Green Bay Packers season
Head coachMike Holmgren
General managerRon Wolf
Home fieldLambeau Field
Division place1st NFC Central
Playoff finishWon Divisional Playoffs (Buccaneers) 21-7
Won Conference Championship (49ers) 23-10
Lost Super Bowl XXXII (Broncos) 24-31

The 1997 Green Bay Packers season was their 79th season overall and their 77th in the National Football League. The season concluded with the team winning its second consecutive NFC championship, but losing in a 31-24 upset to John Elway's Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XXXII.[1] The team narrowly missed its opportunity to post back-to-back Super Bowl wins.

After a dominating 1996 campaign which ended with a victory in Super Bowl XXXI, many expected the Packers to repeat as champions in 1997. During training camp, star safety LeRoy Butler, among others, said that the Packers had the chance to run the table and go 19-0. This opinion drew increased coverage from the media as the Packers notched impressive victories in all five preseason games. The undefeated hype ended quickly, however, when Green Bay lost week 2 in Philadelphia.

Following a relatively slow 3-2 start, the Packers caught fire in the second half of the season, finishing with a 13-3 regular season record and 8-0 home record for the second consecutive year. In the playoffs, Green Bay defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Lambeau Field in the divisional round, and San Francisco 49ers at 3Com Park in the NFC Championship. Some in the media dubbed the NFC title game as "the real Super Bowl" because of the 49ers' and Packers' league dominance, and the relative inferiority of the AFC in recent Super Bowls. Green Bay's win marked the third consecutive year the team had defeated San Francisco in the playoffs.

The Packers entered Super Bowl XXXII as 11 1/2-point favorites. The point spread was likely determined by Green Bay's victory in the previous Super Bowl, the AFC's string of 13 consecutive Super Bowl losses, and Denver's losses in four previous Super Bowls. The game itself was a seesaw battle, and one of the most exciting Super Bowls in history. The Broncos won the thriller 31-24, earning John Elway his first Super Bowl victory at the age of 37, and the first championship in franchise history. Years later, Brett Favre said the Broncos were far underrated, and credited Denver's innovative blitz packages and strategies, foreign to the league at that time, for confusing the Packers.

Packers' quarterback Brett Favre was named the league's MVP for the third year in a row in 1997. Favre was the first player in the history of the award to win three MVPs, and remains the only player to have won three MVPs consecutively.[2] The Packers became the first team to have six NFL MVP award winners.[3]

The 1997 Packers are one of only two teams in NFL history[4] to win seven games against teams that would go on to make the playoffs.[5]


1997 NFL draft

Despite picking last in the 1997 NFL draft, the Packers did well, picking up future all-pro tackle Ross Verba and free safety Darren Sharper.[6]

1997 NFL Draft selections
Round Sel# Player Pos. College
1 30 Ross Verba T Iowa
2 60 Darren Sharper FS William & Mary
3 90 Brett Conway K Penn State
4 126 Jermaine Smith DT Georgia
5 160 Anthony Hicks LB Arkansas
7 213 Chris Miller WR Southern California
7 231 Terrance Lucas CB Montana State
7 240 Ronnie McAda QB Army

Ronnie McAda was Mr. Irrelevant.

Undrafted free agents

1997 Undrafted Free Agents of note
Player Position College
Randy Kinder Running back Notre Dame






Date Opponent Result Game site Record Attendance
August 1, 1997 Miami Dolphins W 20-0 Lambeau Field 1-0
August 8, 1997 New England Patriots W 7-3 Lambeau Field 2-0
August 16, 1997 at Oakland Raiders W 37-24 Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum 3-0
August 24, 1997 at Buffalo Bills W 35-3 SkyDome 4-0
August 28, 1997 New York Giants W 22-17 Camp Randall Stadium 5-0

Regular season

The Packers finished the 1997 regular season with a 13-3 record, clinching first place in the NFC Central division, as well as a first-round playoff bye.[9]

Week Date Opponent Result Game site Record TV Time (CT) TV Announcers Attendance
1 September 1, 1997 Chicago Bears W 38-24 Lambeau Field 1-0 ABC 8:00pm Al Michaels, Frank Gifford & Dan Dierdorf
2 September 7, 1997 at Philadelphia Eagles L 9-10 Veterans Stadium 1-1 FOX 3:00pm Pat Summerall & John Madden
3 September 14, 1997 Miami Dolphins W 23-18 Lambeau Field 2-1 NBC 12:00pm Dick Enberg, Paul Maguire & Phil Simms
4 September 21, 1997 Minnesota Vikings W 38-32 Lambeau Field 3-1 FOX 12:00pm Pat Summerall & John Madden
5 September 28, 1997 at Detroit Lions L 15-26 Pontiac Silverdome 3-2 FOX 12:00pm Dick Stockton & Matt Millen
6 October 5, 1997 Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 21-16 Lambeau Field 4-2 FOX 12:00pm Pat Summerall & John Madden
7 October 12, 1997 at Chicago Bears W 24-23 Soldier Field 5-2 FOX 12:00pm Kevin Harlan & Jerry Glanville
8 Bye
9 October 27, 1997 at New England Patriots W 28-10 Foxboro Stadium 6-2 ABC 8:00pm Al Michaels, Frank Gifford & Dan Dierdorf
10 November 2, 1997 Detroit Lions W 20-10 Lambeau Field 7-2 ESPN 7:00pm Mike Patrick & Joe Theismann
11 November 9, 1997 St. Louis Rams W 17-7 Lambeau Field 8-2 FOX 12:00pm Joe Buck & Bill Maas
12 November 16, 1997 at Indianapolis Colts L 38-41 RCA Dome 8-3 FOX 12:00pm Paul Kennedy & Bill Maas
13 November 23, 1997 Dallas Cowboys W 45-17 Lambeau Field 9-3 FOX 12:00pm Pat Summerall & John Madden
14 December 1, 1997 at Minnesota Vikings W 27-11 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome 10-3 ABC 8:00pm Al Michaels, Frank Gifford & Dan Dierdorf
15 December 7, 1997 at Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 17-6 Houlihan's Stadium 11-3 FOX 12:00pm Dick Stockton & Matt Millen
16 December 14, 1997 at Carolina Panthers W 31-10 Ericsson Stadium 12-3 FOX 3:00pm Pat Summerall & John Madden
17 December 20, 1997 Buffalo Bills W 31-21 Lambeau Field 13-3 NBC 11:30am Tom Hammond & Randy Cross

Game summaries

Week 1

1 234Total
Bears 0 11013 24
• Packers 3 15614 38


Week 7

1 234Total
• Packers 0 1473 24
Bears 10 076 23
  • Date: October 12
  • Location: Soldier Field, Chicago
  • Game start: 1:00 p.m. EST
  • Game attendance: 62,212
  • Game weather: 68°F; wind 15
  • Television network: Fox


Week 12

The Packers suffered a shocking loss to the 0-10 Indianapolis Colts, but did not lose another game until the Super Bowl.


NFC Central
(2)Green Bay Packers 13 3 0 .813 422 282 W5
(4)Tampa Bay Buccaneers 10 6 0 .625 299 263 W1
(5)Detroit Lions 9 7 0 .563 379 306 W2
(6)Minnesota Vikings 9 7 0 .563 354 359 W1
Chicago Bears 4 12 0 .250 263 421 L1


Week Date Opponent Result Game site TV Time Attendance
Divisional January 4, 1998 Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 21-7 Lambeau Field FOX 12:00pm
NFC Championship January 11, 1998 at San Francisco 49ers W 23-10 3Com Park FOX 3:15pm
Super Bowl January 25, 1998 Denver Broncos L 24-31 Qualcomm Stadium NBC 5:15pm

NFC Divisional Game vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

NFC Championship Game at. San Francisco 49ers

Super Bowl XXXII vs. Denver Broncos

The Packers advanced to their fourth Super Bowl appearance, which was also their second consecutive appearance. Despite being favored by double digits, they were denied their fourth ring, as well as their second consecutive championship, by John Elway and the Denver Broncos, who defeated them 31-24. To date, the loss is the only Packers' Super Bowl loss in team history.

Awards and records


  1. ^ "Super Bowl XXXII - Denver 31, Green Bay 24". Archived from the original on 2007-02-09. Retrieved .
  2. ^ "List of APMVP winners". sportsline.com. Archived from the original on 2007-10-13. Retrieved .
  3. ^ NFL 2001 Record and Fact Book, Workman Publishing Co, New York,NY, ISBN 0-7611-2480-2, p. 400
  4. ^ 1998 Jets
  5. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com: In a single season, from 1940 to 2011, in the regular season, team won game, in games against playoff teams only, only in games against teams with winning record for season, sorted by most games in season matching criteria.
  6. ^ "NFL Draft History - Green Bay Packers". NFL.com. Archived from the original on 2007-01-29. Retrieved .
  7. ^ "Administration and Coaching Staff". Green Bay Packers 1997 Official Media Guide. pp. 6-37.
  8. ^ "All Time Coaches Database". Packers.com. Retrieved 2013.
  9. ^ "1997 NFL Standings". NFL.com. Archived from the original on 3 February 2007. Retrieved .
  10. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com
  11. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved 2013-Dec-14.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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