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What has happened to the home field advantage of Lambeau Field?

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by Favre3132, Jan 17, 2012.

  1. Favre3132

    Favre3132 Cheesehead

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    Following the Packers devastating 37-20 loss to the NY Giants this past Sunday, I begin thinking about the home field advantage that Lambeau Field once was. As we all know, since the 2002 season, the Packers have posted a record of 2-4 in the postseason at Lambeau. So where has the home field advantage of Lambeau Field gone to?

    Lambeau Field was once the place that no other teams wanted to play the Packers, especially during the very cold postseason months of December and January. Beginning in 1961 when the Packers hosted their first home playoff game at New City Stadium (later named Lambeau Field), defeating the NY Giants for the NFL Championship 37-0, the Packers boasted an 11-0 home playoff record thru 2001 (the Packers actually owned a 12-0 postseason mark in home games from 1961 thru 2011 - the 1967 Divisional playoff game against the Los Angeles Rams was played at old Milwaukee County Stadium - the only Packers playoff game ever played there).

    The Packers were 11-0 in home playoff games at Lambeau Field from 1961 to 2001 (40 years). So what has happened to that legendary Lambeau mystique and home field advantage the Packers once owned? Now I will grant you that 11 home playoff games at Lambeau Field is not that many during a span of 40 years - we can thank the good ole 70’s and 80’s for that since the Packers only made two playoff appearances, once in 1972 at Washington, and the other during the strike shortened season of 1982 when the Packers played their only home playoff game at Lambeau during the 70’s and 80’s, defeating the St. Louis Cardinals 41-16.


    But more recently, from 2002-2011, the Packers own a 2-4 home playoff record. What has happened? Now some have said that it is the newly redesigned locker rooms for the Packers and for the away team being too comfortable – REALLY! I do not buy that one. Others have said that it is due to the remodeling of Lambeau Field and that it is now too cozy for the visiting team and their fans – NAH, I don’t but that one either. And there have been other reasons given, but for me, many of those reasons are borderline ridiculous.

    I have a theory, which most will say is as ridiculous as well, but it is still worth examining, at least IMO. My theory, get ready for it, is based on .... the kickoff time, the time the game begins (see, you are already saying to yourself – WHAT?). But hear me out and then let's see what you think.

    Before the 2002 season, the Packers never had played a home playoff game at Lambeau Field at night. In fact, they had never played a postseason game at Lambeau with a kickoff time later than 1:00 PM. During the 60’s, all 4 of the Packers home playoff games at Lambeau started at 1:00 PM, and they were 4-0 in those games.

    From 1982 to 2001, all of their home playoff games started at 11:30 AM (all start times I am mentioning here are CST, Central Standard Time). Do you remember when playoff games started at 11:30 AM in the morning on Saturday’s and Sunday’s? The last time was 10 years ago, 2001.


    From 1990 to 2001 (1990 was the first year of the current NFL playoff format) the TV Networks format for the start time of playoff games was the following:

    Wild Card weekend (Saturday and Sunday - 11:30 AM & 3:00)
    Divisional round (Saturday and Sunday - 11:30 AM & 3:00)
    Conference Championships (Sunday - 11:30 & 3:00)

    From 1990 to 2001, the Packers had a 6-0 home playoff record, with every playoff game at Lambeau starting at 11:30 AM.


    Beginning in 2002, the TV Networks went to a new format for the start time of playoff games:

    Wild Card weekend (Saturday 3:30 & 7:00 / Sunday 12:00 & 3:30)
    Divisional round (Saturday 3:30 & 7:00 / Sunday 12:00 & 3:30)
    Conference Championships (2:00 & 5:30)

    From 2002 to 2011, the Packers have gone 2-4 in home playoff games (both wins incidentally have come against the Seattle Seahawks).


    The first season of the new TV format was 2002, and we all remember what happened – the Atlanta Falcons and Michael Vick beat the Packers 27-7 in the very first night playoff game ever at Lambeau – kickoff for the game was 7:00 PM. And since then, the Packers have not been very good at home in the playoffs. Here are the 6 home Packer playoff games from 2002-2011.

    2002 – lost 27-7 to the Atlanta Falcons – kickoff 7:00 PM
    2003 – won 33-27 over the Seattle Seahawks in OT – kickoff 12:00 PM
    2004 – lost 31-17 to the Minnesota Vikings – kickoff 3:30 PM
    2007 – won 42-20 over the Seattle Seahawks – kickoff 3:30 PM
    2007 – lost 23-20 to the NY Giants in OT – kickoff 5:30 PM
    2011 – lost 37-20 to the NY Giants – kickoff 3:30 PM

    So by looking above at the home playoff games from 2002-2011, the Packers are 1-0 in home playoff games starting at 3:00 PM or earlier and they are 1-4 in home playoff games starting at 3:30 PM or later. In fact, the Packers are an outstanding 13-0 in home playoff games all-time at Lambeau with a start time of 3:00 PM or earlier, and sadly, 1-4 in home playoff games with a start time of 3:30 or later. The Packers 3 Super Bowl winning QB’s records in home playoff games at Lambeau – Bart Starr 4-0, Brett Favre 8-3, and Aaron Rodgers 0-1.

    I know it is crazy to consider the above for losing home playoff games, but for me, this is quite interesting. Now am I blaming Sunday’s loss to the Giants because the kickoff of the game was at 3:30 PM? It appears that I am, but no, I blame the loss on a very bad defense, on an offense that was way out of sync, and on a head coach that got out coached. But I do still find it interesting that since the current TV Networks playoff game start times began in 2002, the Packers are a dismal 2-4 in home playoff games at Lambeau, with the only two wins coming against the Holmgren coached Seattle Seahawks (although as coach of the Packers, Holmgren never lost a playoff game at Lambeau, and of course we all know that Lombardi did not). Is there something to all of this? This sounds absolutely nuts, but could it be that for what ever reason, the start times of playoff games at Lambeau Field have something to do with the Packers playing well or not playing well. Surely not!!!!!!!

    I apologize that this is such a long post, but I do find the above quite interesting and wanted to share with you guys. I do not post much and but I am an avid reader of this forum and love reading what everyone else has to say. By the way, if you want a stroll down memory lane, the following is all of the home playoff games the Packers have ever played at Lambeau Field since 1961:

    1961-'67 - every home playoff game - 1:00 PM kickoff time (4-0)
    1961 – won 37-0 over the NY Giants (NFL Championship) – kickoff 1:00 PM

    1965 – won 13-10 over the Baltimore Colts (Western Conference Divisional Playoff) – kickoff 1:00 PM
    1965 – won 23-12 over the Cleveland Browns (NFL Championship) – kickoff 1:00 PM
    1967 – won 21-17 over the Dallas Cowboys (NFL Championship) – kickoff 1:00 PM

    1982-'01 - every home playoff game at Lambeau Field - 11:30 AM kickoff time (6-0)

    1982 (strike) – won 41-16 over the St. Louis Cardinals (1st Round of Super Bowl Tournament) – kickoff 11:30 AM
    1994 – won 16-12 over the Detroit Lions (Wild Card) – kickoff 11:30 AM

    1995 – won 37-20 over the Atlanta Falcons (Wild Card) – kickoff 11:30 AM
    1996 – won 35-14 over the San Francisco 49’ers (Divisional) – kickoff 11:30 AM
    1996 – won 30-13 over the Carolina Panthers (NFCC) – kickoff 11:30 AM
    1997 – won 21-7 over the Tampa Bay Bucs (Divisional) – kickoff 11:30 AM
    2001 – won 25-15 over the San Francisco 49’ers (Wild Card) – kickoff 11:30 AM

    2002-2011 - 1 home playoff game at 12:00, 3 at 3:30, 1 at 5:30 and 1 at 7:00 (record 2-4)2002 – lost 27-7 to the Atlanta Falcons (Wild Card) – kickoff 7:00 PM
    2003 – won 33-27 over the Seattle Seahawks in OT (Wild Card)– kickoff 12:00 PM
    2004 – lost 31-17 to the Minnesota Vikings (Wild Card) – kickoff 3:30 PM
    2007 – won 42-20 over the Seattle Seahawks (Divisional) – kickoff 3:30 PM
    2007 – lost 23-20 to the NY Giants in OT (NFCC) – kickoff 5:30 PM
    2011 – lost 37-20 to the NY Giants (Divisional) – kickoff 3:30 PM

    “What the hell is going on out there?” – Vince Lombardi
     
  2. peteralan71

    peteralan71 Cheesehead

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    I'll be honest. I didn't read that. I read the title. But I do think that winning every home game this year shows a little Lambeau Magic. We're a good team that generally plays well at home. Just didn't on Sunday. It happens.
     
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  3. Forget Favre

    Forget Favre Cheesehead

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    Changes and ups and downs. It's just part of life.
    Someday we will get our playoff Lambeau wins again.
    Hopefully with Rodgers.
     
  4. dbain21

    dbain21 Chicagoland Packer Fan

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    The game start time seems like just a coincidence to me. I can't think of any reason as to why that would necessarily matter/effect a team other than possibly being nervous having to wait for game time to start. In regards to the question of the thread i have no idea what has happened to the lambeau home field in the playoffs but its not there anymore for whatever reason. I think the packers still have an advantage in the regular season especially against inferior opponents.

    The thing that is most alarming to me is that in 3 of the 4 recent playoff losses they were all pretty much blowouts/ commanding wins for the opposition. its one thing to be 2-4 at home in the playoffs if all the losses were close hard fought battles but like I said 3 of them weren't even that close. The atlanta game was the only one I don't remember as clearly as the others but I don't think the Packers were ever in complete control of that game at any point.
     
  5. Brandon

    Brandon Cheesehead

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    Well my explanation for the Packers loss in 2007 was simply age. Our players were old, Favre including, and playing in the cold when you get older is a lot more difficult, regardless of how long you've been doing it for.

    Also Rodgers IS a better dome player than he is on real grass in my opinion, but he's almost just as good at Lambeau so it makes very little difference. Rodgers is from a warm state, so he's working on getting that coldness down I think. Regardless, the only real reason we lost is because our team as a whole did not play well. Home field advantage will still always be an advantage, it was just hard for our crowd to get into the game with all the mistakes we made.
     
  6. ram29jackson

    ram29jackson Cheesehead

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    A team from NY isnt worried about bad weather. And everyone has all the new scientific stuff to counter the cold. Home field is over rated in the playoffs. Its nice to have, but maybe not that helpful
     
  7. Brandon

    Brandon Cheesehead

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    I disagree with the over rated part. Having home field lets you control the field how you want. Take the 49'ers/Saints game for example, the 49'ers saturated the field to make sure the game would be more favorable on the ground than through the air to try and slow down the Saints passing attack.

    Also crowd noise makes running an offense much more difficult, but like I pointed out crowd noise usually only happens when fans are into the game, and it's hard to get into it when you make so many mistakes right off the bat. Let me ask you, do you think the 49'ers would have won if they played at the Saints dome? Methinks not.
     
  8. ram29jackson

    ram29jackson Cheesehead

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    thats interesting but it didnt seem to help....? the Saints still got 435 yards passing...that slowed them down ?
    The Pack won a SB through the back door last year !
     
  9. RazorRamon

    RazorRamon Cheesehead

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    Home field advantage is a well-known fallacy. Teams are actually more fired up to play away from home. It's simply nothing more than a self-pandering idea, so everyone buys into it.
     
  10. Quientus

    Quientus Oenophile

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    If you want your assessment to be more (statistically) correct, you would also have to include the results of all the regular season home games as well in your time frame ...

    Personally I don't think Kick Off time has anything to do with wins and losses ... - But more the fact the game itself has changed ... Todays Packers team is not a "Cold Weather" team - It's as simple as that ...
     
  11. Greenbayphil

    Greenbayphil Cheesehead

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    Tough question after going 8-0 during the regular season at home this year.
    Not sure to be honest.
     
  12. Crazy Packers Fan

    Crazy Packers Fan Cheesehead

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    It doesn't help that half the "fans" sold their tickets to New York fans, making the crowd advantage obsolete. Seriously, there's someone like me who would die to go to a Packers playoff game, and these fans have tickets and just sell them for a profit? That makes me so mad.
     
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  13. Bogart

    Bogart Duke Mantee

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    It wouldn't have mattered if they were on the road or not, their defense was ranked 32nd overall and set the standards of what not to do with your defense after winning the Super Bowl. Home or not, they still would have lost when the defense is mindless out there not knowing what to do.

    I don't know how you can blame this on the home field thing. The Saints also were 8-0 at home this year and were impossible to stop in their dome, but I still think they would have lost to SF regardless if they were at home or on the road, that defense threw everything at them and proved it's possible to shut them down for 3 quarters.

    We just got our asses kicked...No other way to describe it. McCarthy was totally out coached.
     
  14. Chicocheese

    Chicocheese Cheesehead

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    I for one am beginning to think that the idea of a "first round bye" may not be the advantage everyone thinks it to be. Sure, you play one less game but, it may just get you out of rhythm. Then again, the 49ers, Pats, and Ravens may all beg the differ.
     
  15. JacobInFlorida

    JacobInFlorida Cheesehead

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    Rodgers is from northern California. Not exactly a cold climate like GB, but far from LA or San Diego type weather. I don't believe weather has anything to do with it.
     
  16. greenandgold

    greenandgold I'm Dirty Hairy Callahan

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    Home field looks GREAT....if we're playing the Seahawks.
     
  17. Powarun

    Powarun Big Bay Blues fan

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    Maybe that renovation we had in 97 caused something to stir, and now if we complete Lambeau field it will bring back teh win streak.
     
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  18. Forget Favre

    Forget Favre Cheesehead

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    I can't take this seriously but it's an interesting thought.
    Points on being creative on finding blame of the loss on something else!

    This could be a good marketing idea to sell more stock!
    Fans! Help Lambeau be complete to break the curse!
    Buy Packers Stock! Buy it Now! Buy ALL of it!
    We gotta win play off games!
    Buy! Buy! Buy!
     
  19. P-E-Z

    P-E-Z Cheesehead

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    A cold weather team playing a cold weather team no advantage. The crowd is plus at home.
     
  20. KilrB

    KilrB Cheesehead

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    The Packers have to run the ball better to win at home in Jan.
     
  21. Shawnsta3

    Shawnsta3 Cheesehead

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    Not buying that. Not for one second. If you were watching the same game I was, our running game was NOT the problem. It could have been improved, sure! But don't blame it all on that.
     
  22. News Bot

    News Bot News Bot

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    Source: JSOnline.com
     
  23. TheOnlyMeIKnow

    TheOnlyMeIKnow Guest

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    Start times have nothing to do with this team's problems with playoff games at home. It's HEART and GUTS! The Packers at home in the playoffs have really shown it in ONE game since Holmgren left, and that was the Seattle game where Grant got us behind early, and Favre went Sandlot Houdini on Seattle's defense. Vick ran all over us I think it was in '01. Giants have now gotten us TWICE at Lambeau. I mean come on, losing a playoff game AT Lambeau, you'd have an easier time trying to find BOTH Loch Ness Monster AND Sasquatch, than imagining a Packers home playoff loss. Now, it seems to be the only option.
     
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  24. Bogart

    Bogart Duke Mantee

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    I think people will blame it on anything and everything without looking at the facts, it's right there in your face. 32nd ranked defense. Don't kid yourself, we all knew it was possible to get blown out. All it took was for the offense to get shut down, cause this defense does nothing at stopping the other team. Every time we won, it was some light hearted excuse to give the D a break, but when we lose in the playoffs that should be the eye opener that something REALLY WAS WRONG with the defense. 15-1 don't mean **** if you have to score 40 points a game just to win cause your defense is so god awful!
     
  25. TheOnlyMeIKnow

    TheOnlyMeIKnow Guest

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    Bogart,

    EXACTLY!
     

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