Why Is It So Important for the Packers to Win Their Last 2 Preseason Games?

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Why Is It So Important for the Packers to Win Their Last 2 Preseason Games?
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Mike McCarthy

OK, Packers fans, is it time to panic yet?

I think you know what I’m talking about…an 0-2 record in the preseason, a rash of injuries, uncertainty regarding the backup quarterback position and on and on.

For some people, the preseason record doesn’t mean much; that is probably the company line that head coach Mike McCarthy, general manager Ted Thompson and their players would give if you asked them about their 0-2 start in the exhibition season.

But let me throw out a few numbers that might make you wonder. Did you know:

- Since 2002, the Packers have gone 24-24 (.500 winning percentage) in the regular season when they won only one preseason game that year?

- Since 2002, the Packers have gone 37-27 (.578) winning percentage) in the regular season when they won two preseason games that year?

- Since 2002, the Packers have gone 38-10 (.792 winning percentage) in the regular season when they won three preseason games that year?

Obviously, based on the numbers above, you see that the more preseason wins over the past 10 years, the better the regular-season record. Say what you want about the preseason and what it does (and doesn’t) mean, but these are the numbers. Take it for what they’re worth. Again, it’s food for thought.

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In looking at the past 10 seasons, we discover that of the 120 teams that made the playoffs since 2002, 95 (79.2 percent) won two or more preseason games. Here’s the breakdown of preseason wins by the playoff teams from 2002-2011.

 

Preseason Wins, Playoff Teams

- 0 preseason wins: five playoff teams (Indianapolis, 2005; Arizona, 2009; Chicago, 2010; Indianapolis, 2010; Atlanta, 2011)

- 1 preseason win: 20 playoff teams

- 2 preseason wins: 54 playoff teams

- 3 preseason wins: 31 playoff team

- 4 preseason wins: 10 playoff teams

 

If we look at the teams that made it to the Super Bowl since 2002, 15 of the 20 Super Bowl teams won two or more preseason games that season. Of the 10 Super Bowl champs, seven of the 10 won two or more preseason games that year. The last team to win the Super Bowl after winning four preseason games were the 2003 New England Patriots.

Is it time to panic? There’s still two preseason games left on the schedule. Chances are you probably aren’t going to hear that word come out of Green Bay. But just keep in mind these numbers, especially if the Packers lose one or both of their last two preseason contests.

 

Follow Jerry on Twitter @StatsonTapp.

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