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Week 1 Regular-Season History for the Green Bay Packers Since the 1970 AFL-NFL Merger: Fan’s Observation

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The Green Bay Packers have been one of the NFL's best Week 1 teams for the past two decades. They've won five consecutive regular-season openers since 2007. Their latest victory occurred when they defeated the New Orleans Saints during the 2011 NFL Kickoff Game on September 8, 2011.

The Packers look for their sixth consecutive Week 1 victory when they host the San Francisco 49ers on September 9, 2012. The Packers haven't lost a regular-season opener against an out-of-division opponent since the New York Jets defeated them on September 3, 2000. However, the Packers are opening against their first NFC West opponent since the St. Louis Rams defeated them on September 3, 1995.

How important is a Week 1 victory? A loss wouldn't equate to a death sentence. However, since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger, the Packers have clinched a playoff berth on just two occasions when they started 0-1. The last time was during the 2003-04 season.

This is a history of the Packers' regular-season openers (Week 1 games) since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger. The format for this information is "Date, opponent, end-of-game result (score), end-of-season record (postseason result)." I've broken it down into two sections: "Return of Glory (1993 through present)" and "Downtimes (1970 through 1992)."

Return To Glory (1993 Through Present)

September 9, 2012: San Francisco 49ers, TBD

September 8, 2011

: New Orleans Saints, WIN (42-34), 15-1 (NFC Divisional)

September 12, 2010

: at Philadelphia Eagles, WIN (27-20), 10-6 (Super Bowl Champs)

September 13, 2009

: Chicago Bears, WIN (21-15), 11-5 (NFC Wild Card)

September 8, 2008

: Minnesota Vikings, WIN (24-19), 6-10 (No Playoffs)

September 9, 2007

: Philadelphia Eagles, WIN (16-13), 13-3 (NFC Championship)

September 10, 2006

: Chicago Bears, LOSS (26-0), 8-8 (No Playoffs)

September 11, 2005

: at Detroit Lions, LOSS (17-3), 4-12 (No Playoffs)

September 13, 2004

: at Carolina Panthers, WIN (24-14), 10-6 (NFC Wild Card)

September 7, 2003

: Minnesota Vikings, LOSS (30-25), 10-6 (NFC Divisional)

September 8, 2002

: Atlanta Falcons, WIN (37-34 OT), 12-4 (NFC Wild Card)

September 9, 2001

: Detroit Lions, WIN (28-6), 12-4 (NFC Divisional)

September 3, 2000

: New York Jets, LOSS (20-16), 9-7 (No Playoffs)

September 12, 1999

: Oakland Raiders, WIN (28-24), 8-8 (No Playoffs)

September 6, 1998

: Detroit Lions, WIN (38-19), 11-5 (NFC Wild Card)

September 1, 1997

: Chicago Bears, WIN (38-24), 13-3 (NFC Champions)

September 1, 1996

: at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, WIN (34-3), 13-3 (Super Bowl Champs)

September 3, 1995

: St. Louis Rams, LOSS (17-14), 11-5 (NFC Championship)

September 4, 1994

: Minnesota Vikings, WIN (16-10), 9-7 (NFC Divisional)

September 5, 1993

: Los Angeles Rams, WIN (36-6), 9-7 (NFC Divisional)

Overall Record: 14-5 (.737 Win Percentage)

Home Record: 11-4 (.733 Win Percentage)

Away Record: 3-1 (.750 Win Percentage, Two Super Bowls)

Playoff Appearances After Week 1 Win: 12-for-14 (.857 Percentage, Two Super Bowls)

Playoff Appearances After Week 1 Loss: 2-for-5 (.400 Percentage)

Downtimes (1970 Through 1992)

September 6, 1992: Minnesota Vikings, LOSS (23-20 OT), 9-7 (No Playoffs)

September 1, 1991: Philadelphia Eagles, LOSS (20-3), 4-12 (No Playoffs)

September 9, 1990

: Los Angeles Rams, WIN (36-24), 6-10 (No Playoffs)

September 10, 1989

: Tampa Bay Buccaneers, LOSS (23-21), 10-6 (No Playoffs)

September 4, 1988

: Los Angeles Rams, LOSS (34-7), 4-12 (No Playoffs)

September 13, 1987

: Los Angeles Raiders, LOSS (20-0), 5-9-1 (No Playoffs)

September 7, 1986

: Houston Oilers, LOSS (31-3), 4-12 (No Playoffs)

September 8, 1985

: at New England Patriots, LOSS (26-20), 8-8 (No Playoffs)

September 2, 1984

: St. Louis Cardinals, WIN (24-23), 8-8 (No Playoffs)

September 4, 1983

: at Houston Oilers, WIN (41-38 OT), 8-8 (No Playoffs)

September 12, 1982

: Los Angeles Rams, WIN (35-23), 5-3-1 (NFC Divisional)

September 6, 1981

: at Chicago Bears, WIN (16-9), 8-8 (No Playoffs)

September 7, 1980

: Chicago Bears, WIN (12-6 OT), 5-10-1 (No Playoffs)

September 2, 1979

: at Chicago Bears, LOSS (6-3), 5-11 (No Playoffs)

September 3, 1978

: at Detroit Lions, WIN (13-7), 8-7-1 (No Playoffs)

September 18, 1977

: at New Orleans Saints, WIN (24-20), 4-10 (No Playoffs)

September 12, 1976

: San Francisco 49ers, LOSS (26-14), 5-9 (No Playoffs)

September 21, 1975

: Detroit Lions, LOSS (30-16), 4-10 (No Playoffs)

September 15, 1974

: Minnesota Vikings, LOSS (32-17), 6-8 (No Playoffs)

September 17, 1973

: New York Jets, WIN (23-7), 5-7-2 (No Playoffs)

September 17, 1972

: at Cleveland Browns, WIN (26-10), 10-4 (NFC Divisional)

September 19, 1971

: New York Giants, LOSS (42-40), 4-8-2 (No Playoffs)

September 20, 1970

: Detroit Lions, LOSS (40-0), 6-8 (No Playoffs)

Overall Record: 10-13 (.435 Win Percentage)

Home Record: 5-11 (.313 Win Percentage)

Away Record: 5-2 (.714 Win Percentage)

Playoff Appearances After Week 1 Win: 2-for-10 (.200 Percentage)

Playoff Appearances After Week 1 Loss: 0-for-13 (Ouch)

Joshua Huffman graduated from Middle Tennessee State University as a marketing major in 2009. He's been a Middle Tennessee resident from 1986-88 and 2001-present. He lived in the Upper Peninsula and Northern Wisconsin from 1988-01 and for approximately eight months in 2009-10 as he completed a 20-game volunteer position with the USHL's Green Bay Gamblers. His favorite sports organizations include the Green Bay Packers, Chicago Cubs, Nashville Predators and Tennessee Titans. He can be found on Twitter HERE.

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