Monday, June 30, 2008

A 1992 flashback

No...not that kind of flashback. This one came courtesy tonight of The NFL Network: the Sept. 20, 1992 game between the Pack and Bengals in which Wisconsin's own Tim Krumrie crunched then-starting QB Don Majkowski's left ankle allowing a 2nd-year player by the name of Brett Favre to enter the game. (I know, that was a long sentence...take a breath and start reading again when ready...)

This game marked Brett's first win and first game-winning comeback all rolled into one. It was also Mike Holmgren's first victory as Packers' head coach.

One of the interesting comments made by the NBC announcers (Jim Lampley and Ahmad Rashad) was that "You live and die with somebody like Brett Favre" after he fumbled inside the Pack's own 30, down 10-3 late in the third quarter. That statement applied as well in that first game as it did in the last. But we wouldn't have had it any other way.

Another interesting aspect of this game were some of the names involved: Edgar Bennett, Jackie Harris, Bryce Paup, Terrell Buckley (who, characteristically, dropped a sure interception...but, to be fair, he also had a punt return for a TD...but then also, characteristically, fumbled a punt at a critical time in the game), Ken Ruettgers, Robert Brooks, Johnny Holland, Vince Workman, Brian Noble, LeRoy Butler, Sterling Sharpe (who caught Brett's first NFL TD pass), John Jurkovic, Harry Sydney, Tony Bennett, Ed West, Chris Jacke, Tootie Robbins, and Sanjay Beach (who goes down in football history as being the receiver who caught Brett's first pass...other than the deflected one which Brett caught himself, of course.)

It was also fascinating to see just how bad Brett looked for much of that game...lots of fumbles, lots of sacks, lots of missed throws, lots of "What the heck is going on out there?!" (to quote the late, great Vince Lombardi). But you also saw those flashes of what would make Brett the greatest QB the game ever saw: a rocket arm, a never-give-up attitude, and a guy that could take a pounding and still keep coming back.

It was an interesting glimpse back in Packers history...and at the start of a legendary career.

Oh yeah...if you recall, the Pack won 24-23 with 13 seconds to go on a bomb down the right sideline from Brett to Kitrick Taylor, and a PAT by Jacke. The throw was a classic. And so was Brett's response: just as he did in his Super Bowl win, Brett took his helmet off and ran around like a little kid. Wow. It was the first of many "Wows" we had as Packer fans with Brett at the helm.

You can read more about this legendary game here.