2011 Green Bay Packers: The 5 Most Gut-Wrenching Plays of the Season

J FCorrespondent IFebruary 15, 2011

FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 19:  Quarterback Matt Flynn #10 of the Green Bay Packers looks at the ball as it hits the ground after being sacked by linebacker Tully Banta-Cain #95 of the New England Patriots during the fourth quarter of the game at Gillette Stadium on December 19, 2010 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The Patriots won the game 31-27.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

During the Packers unlikely run to Super Bowl XLV, they experienced pitfalls, injuries and plays that made fans want to scream with frustration and eat their Cheeseheads.

Of course, none of these blunders matter now, because they are champions, but at the time they put Packer backers through severe mental and emotional anguish.

Here is a flashback to the plays that caused the smashing of objects and the pulling out of hair in Green Bay households.

5. Rodgers' First INT in NFC Championship

The Packers were looking to score before the half, and were easily driving down the field until disaster struck. Aaron Rodgers threw the a perfectly placed ball to Donald Driver near the sideline. It was low and Driver had to reach down for it, but it was where it had to be and catchable.

Double D let the pigskin slip through his hands and bounce off his cleat right into the arms of Bears LB Lance Briggs.

Talk about unlucky.

4. Rodgers' Goal-Line Fumble

During the regular season, the Packers met the Falcons in Atlanta for a playoff preview. Green Bay looked like the better team, and probably would've came away with a W had Rodgers not coughed up the ball on a QB sneak in the red-zone.

Instead, the Falcons kicked a game-winning field goal as the clock ran out.

3. James Jones' Fumble Against the Bears

In the final minutes of Week 3, Jones dropped the ball on a hit from Brian Urlacher near the sideline. With any bit of luck, the ball would have simply bounced out of bounds and the Pack would have retained possession.

However, the ball acted like it was allergic to the sideline and was scooped up by the Bears.

 The Packers potential game-winning drive turned into a Robbie Gould game-winning FG as time expired.

2. Matt Flynn's Red-Zone INT

Rodgers was concussed on the sideline as Matt Flynn stepped in at QB and led the Packers down the field. It appeared the Packers would squeak out the victory until Flynn decided he would hit a Lions linebacker right on the numbers with an errant throw.

This loss was the hardest on the season for Packers fans, who saw the team's playoff hopes melting away.

1. Dan Connolly's Kick Return

Embarrassing. Hilarious. Demoralizing.

Whatever you want to call it, it was unbelievable.

The 313-lb. lineman carried the ball 71 yards on the Packers' special teams unit for the longest return in NFL history by a lineman. The Packers were the underdogs, but had the upper hand on the Patriots until Connolly's big play ripped the momentum away.

Packers fans didn't know whether to laugh or cry, as tacklers bounced off the big guy as he rumbled on.

Looking back on them, these plays were somewhat humorous in nature, but extremely unfortunate. In a roller-coaster year for the Pack, they made the Super Bowl winning season even more memorable.