100 things to know about the Packers in their 100th season

ByRob Demovsky ESPN logo
Thursday, July 26, 2018

The Green Bay Packers will kick off their 100th season of football on Sept. 9 against the Chicago Bears, and they will turn 100 years old on Aug. 11, 2019. Here are 100 things to know about one of the NFL's most storied franchises:

1. Titletown, USA: Why is Green Bay, Wisconsin, nicknamed Titletown? The Packers hold an NFL-record 13 championships, including four Super Bowl titles. The Packers twice won three straight titles -- first in 1929, 1930 and 1931, then again in 1965, 1966 and 1967. The other titles came in 1936, 1939, 1944, 1961, 1962, 1996 and 2010.

2. Aug. 11, 1919: Green Bay's pro football team was born in the second-floor editorial room of the old Green Bay Press-Gazette newspaper building. There was nothing even written about the formation of the team in the next day's newspaper. Two days later, there was a story published saying the new team would be sponsored by the Indian Packing Co. and be known as the Packers.

3. "Captain" Curly: On Aug. 14, 1919, Curly Lambeau was named captain and the Press-Gazette's George Whitney Calhoun the manager, and the two have been credited as the team's co-founders.

4. The birth of the NFL: The Packers joined the American Professional Football Association on Aug. 27, 1921. The league was renamed the National Football League in 1922. Green Bay was the smallest city in the league (population 31,017) next to only Tonawanda, New York, whose team lasted just one game.

5. Publicly owned: Locals passed the hat to keep the team alive in the early days, but then there were five official stock sales -- 1923, 1935, 1950, 1997 and 2011. There are 5,011,566 shares of the team owned by 361,060 stockholders, who receive no financial dividends. To protect against anyone taking control of the team, no one person can own more than 200,000 shares. The president, who is the head of the seven-member executive committee, acts as the owner on all league matters.

6. $12,990.94: Packers' net profit from operations in 1950.

7. $75,000,000: Packers' net profit from operations in 2016, a franchise record.

8. $5: Price of Packers stock during the 1923 sale.

9. 1,109: Shares of stock sold during the 1923 sale.

10. $5,545: Amount raised during the 1923 sale.

11. $25: Price of Packers stock during the 1935 sale.

12. 484: Shares of stock sold during the 1935 sale.

13. $12,100: Amount raised during the 1935 sale.

14. $25: Price of Packers stock during the 1950 sale.

15. 4,165.5: Shares of stock sold during the 1950 sale.

16. $104,137.50: Amount raised during the 1950 sale.

17. $200: Price of Packers stock during the 1997 sale.

18. 120,010: Shares of stock sold during the 1997 sale.

19. $24,002,000: Amount raised during the 1997 sale.

20. $250: Price of Packers stock during the 2011 sale.

21. 269,640: Shares of stock sold during the 2011 sale.

22. $67,407,750: Amount raised during the 2011 sale.

23. First NFL game: After playing independently for two seasons, the Packers played their first official league game on Oct. 23, 1921, a 7-6 win over the Minneapolis Marines. Their first loss came a week later against the Rock Island Independents.

24. 1895: The year football arrived in Green Bay, when a citywide team was organized. Green Bay's two oldest high schools, East and West, played their first game against each other 10 years later.

25. Lambeau Field: Dedicated on Sept. 29, 1957, it was originally called City Stadium. It was constructed at a cost of $960,000 and with a seating capacity of 32,154. It was rededicated as Lambeau Field on Sept. 11, 1965.

26. 1265 Lombardi Ave.: That's the address of Lambeau Field, which today not only seats 81,441 for games but has been sold out on a season-ticket basis since 1960. The largest renovation came in 2003 with a total cost of $295 million.

27. Waiting list: At the start of 2018, there were 133,702 on the waiting list for season tickets. Typically, about 100 people from the waiting list each year become new season-ticket holders.

28. Hagemeister Park: The Packers' first home field from 1919 to '22, it was a public park along the East River. Fans helped build a fence around the field in 1920 so the team could charge admission. The small, wooden stadium was torn down after that season and rebuilt on the same spot for the 1921 season with a capacity of 3,500.

29. Bellevue Park: The Packers' home after Hagemeister was torn down to build Green Bay East High School. It was built in less than three weeks and came from the same wood as Hagemeister. It was the site of the first Packers-Bears game in Green Bay in 1923.

30. City Stadium: The Packers' home from 1925 to '56 sat alongside East High. It's still used today by the Red Devils' prep team and is known as "Old City Stadium." The last NFL game here was Bart Starr's first pro start and featured nine future members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

31. Milwaukee homes away from home: The Packers played selected home games in Milwaukee from 1933 to 1994 and used four different stadiums. They are the next four on this list.

32. Borchert Field: Hosted one Packers home game in 1933 (they also played one nonleague game here against Racine in 1921 and a road game here each year from 1922 to '26 against the Milwaukee Badgers).

33. State Fair Park: Located on the Wisconsin State Fair Grounds in West Allis, the Packers played games here from 1934 to '51 and hosted the 1939 NFL Championship Game for the first time. The site was selected over City Stadium in Green Bay.

34. Marquette Stadium: The Packers played here in 1952, and it served as the home for Marquette University's team until the school dropped football after the 1960 season.

35. County Stadium: The home stadium for baseball's Milwaukee Braves and Brewers, it was used by the Packers from 1953 to '94 until team president Bob Harlan decided all home games should be played in Green Bay. Because it was configured for baseball, both benches were on the same sideline for football games.

36. The Frozen Tundra: The coldest game on record in Green Bay, known as the "Ice Bowl," was played on Dec. 31, 1967, when the game-time temperature was minus-13 degrees. The Packers began keeping weather records in 1959 and since then there was only one other subzero game -- the 2007 NFC Championship Game against the Giants when it was minus-1.

37. Built-in heaters: There's a heating system below the grass at Lambeau Field that can keep roots at 55 degrees to prevent the playing surface from freezing. The field maintenance staff also uses grow lights throughout the season to help keep the grass alive.

38: Not-so-Frozen Tundra: The Packers played the warmest game in Lambeau Field history on Sept. 24, 2017, when it was it 89 degrees at kickoff against the Bengals.

39. Retired numbers: The Packers have retired six numbers. They are commemorated on the faade inside the bowl at Lambeau Field. They make up the next six spots on this list.

40. No. 14: Don Hutson. Retired in 1951.

41. No. 15: Bart Starr. Retired in 1973.

42. No. 66: Ray Nitschke. Retired in 1983.

43. No. 92: Reggie White. Retired in 2005.

44. No. 4: Brett Favre. Retired in 2015.

45. Not always Green and Gold: The Packers are known for those colors, but that wasn't always the case. Their first colors were navy and gold, similar to what Curly Lambeau wore in college at Notre Dame. They did not introduce green into their color scheme until the 1930s.

46. Heritage Trail: Started by team historian Cliff Christl, the Packers' Heritage Trail is a self-guided historical tour of the team and the city. Twenty of the 25 commemorative plaques are located within a 2-mile radius of downtown Green Bay. One of the stops is at Old City Stadium.

47. 222 Mission St.: The site of Lombardi's first home in Green Bay. It was sold most recently in 2014 for $475,000.

48. Rockwood Lodge: Lambeau's handpicked training facility for the team until 1950, when it burned down. Some believe the insurance money from the fire helped save the Packers franchise. The Packers paid $32,000 for it and collected $75,000 on the insurance claim.

49. Titletown District: The Packers own most of the land between Lambeau Field and I-41, and it now includes a luxury hotel, brewery, orthopedic medical center, skating rink and sledding hill.

50. Lee Remmel Press Box: The press box at Lambeau Field is named for Remmel, who reported on the Packers for the Press-Gazette and then worked for the team as both director of public relations and team historian.

51. St. Nobert College: The Packers' training camp home in nearby De Pere, Wisconsin, since 1958. It's where the players sleep, eat and meet during camp. They don't practice there, however. They use their regular-season fields across from Lambeau.

52. Oneida Street: While the stadium's address is listed as Lombardi Avenue, it's bordered on the east side by Oneida Street, which bisects the stadium and the team's practice facilities. Clarke Hinkle Field, the team's regular-season outdoor practice area, sits next to Oneida Street. It's one of the main roads through the Village of Ashwaubenon, which surrounds Lambeau Field. Fans used to line Oneida Street during training camp when practices were held on Hinkle Field.

53. Ridge Road: The border street on the west side of the stadium, it's home to the famous Kroll's West, a popular bar/restaurant known for butter burgers and its tailgate parties on game days.

54. The Don Hutson Center: The team's main indoor practice facility opened on July 18, 1994, at a ceremony attended by Hutson himself. It features two practice fields, 90-foot ceilings and a FieldTurf surface that resembles most indoor stadiums.

55. Ray Nitschke Field: Home for training camp practices since 2009, when it reopened with permanent bleachers and lights for night practices. It also features a heated field so the team can practice outside in cold weather.

56. Bike kids: Since the late 1960s, Packers players have been riding kids' bikes to and from training camp practices. Some players pick a different kid to ride with every day, while others have had the same bike kid for years. Either way, it's one of the longest-running traditions around the team.

57. The Lambeau Leap: The staple touchdown celebration made its debut on Dec. 26, 1993, when LeRoy Butler jumped into the stands after a fumble return for a touchdown. Butler caused the fumble against the Raiders, and Reggie White recovered it. White then lateraled the ball to Butler, who cruised to the end zone and without hesitation jumped into the arms of fans in the first row. There's a statue outside the stadium today that commemorates the celebration.

58. Iron-man streak: Brett Favre became the Packers' starting quarterback on Sept. 27, 1992; it was the first of a record 253 straight starts for the Packers. The streak would reach 297 regular-season games, including his tenures with the Jets and Vikings. Of all of Favre's records, he has said on several occasions the streak is the one he treasures most.

59. 1,806: Total games played in Packers history, including the regular season, playoffs, preseason, nonleague games and independent games.

60. 737-562-37: The Packers' all-time record in regular-season NFL games. The win total is second all time only to the Chicago Bears, whose first season was considered 1920.

61. .567: The Packers' all-time winning percentage in NFL games, second only to the Dallas Cowboys (.573).

62. 34-22: The Packers' all-time record in playoff games. Their 34 postseason wins is tied with the Cowboys for second in NFL history behind only the Steelers (35).

63. 32: Playoff appearances by the Packers, including a franchise-record eight straight (from 2009 to '16). That's tied with the Cowboys and Giants for the most postseason berths in NFL history.

64. 5: Super Bowl appearances by the Packers, including four wins.

65. 194: Games played between the Packers and Bears, which is the most between any two teams in the NFL.

66. 96-94-6: The Packers' all-time record, including playoffs, against the Bears. With two wins last season, they took the series lead for the first time since 1933.

67. 31-32-1: The Packers' record on Monday Night Football. Last season's loss to the Lions marked the 25th straight year they appeared on MNF, which is the NFC's longest active streak. The streak will continue this season against the 49ers on Oct. 15.

68. 14 head coaches: Mike McCarthy became the 14th head coach in team history in 2006. Those who came before him were: Lambeau (1921-49), Gene Ronzani (1950-53), Lisle Blackbourn (1954-57), Ray "Scooter" McLean (1958), Lombardi (1959-67), Phil Bengston (1968-70), Dan Devine (1971-74), Bart Starr (1975-83), Forrest Gregg (1984-87), Lindy Infante (1988-91), Mike Holmgren (1992-98), Ray Rhodes (1999) and Mike Sherman (2000-05).

69. 209: Wins by Lambeau as the Packers' head coach, the most in franchise history.

70. 121: Wins by McCarthy as the Packers' head coach, making him the only other coach in franchise history with more than 100 wins.

71. 4: Packers coaches to win NFL titles: Lambeau (six), Lombardi (five), Holmgren (one), McCarthy (one).

72. 6: Players to win the NFL MVP with the Packers: Hutson (two), Paul Hornung (one), Jim Taylor (one), Starr (one), Favre (three), Aaron Rodgers (two).

73. Packers Hall of Famers: The Packers Hall of Fame, a separate entity from the team, houses its museum at Lambeau Field and includes 161 members. The two most recent inductees, Mark Tauscher and Ryan Longwell, were enshrined in July.

74. Pro Football Hall of Famers: Although Hall of Famers are not inducted as members of a team, there are 24 inductees who are either exclusively or primarily associated with the Packers. That's second to the Bears (27). The Hall of Famers make up the next 24 on this list.

75. Curly Lambeau: Co-founded the Packers. Went to high school in Green Bay and played collegiately at Notre Dame before returning home to start the team in 1919, two years before there was even an NFL. He worked as a shipping clerk for the Indian Packing Co., which funded the team's first uniforms. He played halfback until 1929 and continued as head coach until 1949, when he left to coach the Chicago Cardinals and then the Washington Redskins. Green Bay's stadium was named after him in 1965, just months after his death.

76. Cal Hubbard: Pro Football's early iron man, Hubbard played both offense and defense in helping the Packers to three straight NFL championships from 1929 to '31. He's the only person in the Hall of Fame for both professional football and baseball, where he served as an umpire.

77. Don Hutson: The NFL's first star receiver, Hutson led the league in receptions eight times and scoring five times. He won the NFL's Carr Trophy -- then the MVP award -- in 1941 and 1942. He also recorded 30 interceptions while playing defensive back for the last six years of his career and kicked from 1940 to '45. He once scored a league-record 29 points in one quarter.

78. Clarke Hinkle: Played offense and defense as a fullback and linebacker. He retired as the NFL's all-time rushing leader with 3,860 yards and played on the NFL championship teams of 1936 and 1939.

79. Mike Michalske: Played guard on offense and was one of the first to employ blitzes and stunts as a defensive player. Teamed on defense with Hubbard and played on the 1929-31 title teams.

80. Johnny "Blood" McNally: Known simply as "Johnny Blood," he played on four NFL championship teams (1929-31 and 1936) and caught 10 touchdown passes in 1931, which remained an unofficial record for 12 years. Titletown Brewing Co. has a beer named after him called Johnny Blood Red Ale.

81. Arnie Herber: Known as the pioneer of the deep throw in the NFL, he became the first quarterback in league history to throw for more than 1,000 yards in a season. Like Lambeau, he went to high school in Green Bay.

82. Vince Lombardi: Coached the Packers to five NFL championships in a seven-year period (1961-67). Was the winning coach in the first two Super Bowls, and the trophy presented to the game's winner was named after him following his death in 1970.

83. Tony Canadeo: Known as the "Grey Ghost" coming out of Gonzaga, he became the third player in history to rush for 1,000 yards in a season when he did so in 1949.

84. Jim Taylor: Held the Packers' career rushing record until Ahman Green broke it in 2009. Posted five straight 1,000-yard seasons (1960-64) and retired as the NFL's second-leading rusher behind Jim Brown.

85. Forrest Gregg: Lombardi once called him the "finest player I ever coached." Gregg was a standout offensive tackle on the coach's championship teams. Gregg also coached the Packers from 1984 to '87.

86. Herb Adderley: The cornerback picked off 39 passes during his career with the Packers and returned seven of them for touchdowns. He started on six NFL championship teams and played in four of the first six Super Bowls (two with the Packers, two with the Cowboys).

87. Ray Nitschke: The epitome of the Lombardi-tough defenses, Nitschke made the NFL's 50th anniversary team in 1969 and the 75th anniversary team in 1994.

88. Willie Davis: The defensive end played before sacks were an official stat. If they were, he'd be in the Packers' record book. Estimates put his sack total at more than 100. He was the defensive captain of the first two Super Bowl teams.

89. Bart Starr: The 200th selection in the 1956 draft (17th round) gained the trust of Lombardi, and Starr rewarded him by quarterbacking the Packers to five championships. The 1966 NFL MVP also was the MVP of Super Bowl I and II. Coached the Packers from 1975 to '83.

90. Jim Ringo: The center excelled before Lombardi's arrival and flourished after it. He was named to the 1960s All-Decade team.

91. Willie Wood: An undrafted player who petitioned teams for a tryout, he became one of the heroes of Super Bowl I with his 50-yard interception return. The safety posted 48 career interceptions.

92. Henry Jordan: The defensive tackle was one of the most effective pass-rushers on Lombardi's championship teams and unofficially had 3.5 sacks in the 1967 Western Conference Championship Game win over the Rams.

93. James Lofton: The receiver became the first Packers player without ties to either Lambeau or Lombardi to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He went on to star for the Bills after a nine-year stint with the Packers from 1978 to '86.

94. Paul Hornung: The "Golden Boy" was more than a halfback. He was an icon who lived large off the field. He led the NFL in scoring three straight years (1959-61) and set a league record with 176 points during 1960 in a 12-game season, a mark that stood for 46 years.

95. Reggie White: Although he played just six of his 15 NFL seasons for the Packers, he helped resurrect the franchise in the free-agent era by becoming the first major free agent to come to Green Bay in 1993 and was a key member of the 1996 team that captured the Packers' first Super Bowl title in nearly 30 years.

96. Dave Robinson: One of the last Lombardi-era players to be inducted, he led all NFL linebackers with 12 interceptions from 1965 to '67.

97. Ron Wolf: Without Wolf, there would be no Holmgren or Favre in Green Bay. After he was hired as general manager in 1991, his trade for Favre and decision to hire Holmgren as coach turned around a team that was, as Wolf puts it, "the Siberia of the NFL."

98. Brett Favre: The iron-man quarterback led the Packers to Super Bowl XXXI, their first championship since Super Bowl II, and won three straight NFL MVPs (1995-97).

99. Hall of Famer-in-waiting: Lombardi-era guard Jerry Kramer was elected in February and will be inducted into Canton next month. Kramer was a finalist 11 times and finally got elected this year.

100. Future Hall of Famers: There are at least two more players with strong ties to the Packers who are guaranteed to end up in Canton: former defensive back Charles Woodson and current quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

Sources: Packers media guide, Packers.com, Pro Football Hall of Fame, Green Bay Press-Gazette, Pro Football Reference, ESPN Stats & Information, Brown County Library.