Packers 2008 schedule

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Gazette Staff
April 15, 2008
— Even without retired legend Brett Favre, the Green Bay Packers' 88th regular-season schedule will include four games in prime time.

The 2008 schedule, released Tuesday by the NFL, includes three "Monday Night Football" contests on ESPN and one Sunday night game on NBC.

The Packers will open the 2008 season with a nationally televised "Monday Night Football" game against NFC North rival Minnesota at Lambeau Field. The Sept. 8 game will be the first of an NFL doubleheader that night on ESPN.

The Sept. 8 game will be the fourth season opener in club history under the bright lights of Monday night. Green Bay is 3-0 in its previous Monday night openers.

This year marks the 16th consecutive season with an appearance on MNF for the Packers, the NFC's longest active streak.

The Dallas Cowboys travel to Lambeau Field for a Sunday night showdown in Week 3. It is the third consecutive year the Packers will play in a Sunday night game on NBC, and the second consecutive season they line up against the Cowboys in primetime.

Green Bay plays its third prime time game in Week 12 when it travels to New Orleans for the first time since 2002. The MNF game marks head coach Mike McCarthy's return to New Orleans for the first time since serving as the Saints' offensive coordinator for five seasons (2000-04).

The fourth prime time game, and third Monday night contest, comes in Week 16 and showcases the NFL's most historic rivalry: Packers vs. Bears. No two professional football teams have met on the field more than Green Bay and Chicago, and this December contest marks the 177th installment in the series.

Green Bay last played in four primetime games in 2005, when it also played three Monday Night Football games in addition to one Sunday night contest.

Schedule notes

-The Packers last opened against two divisional opponents in 2003, also against Minnesota and Detroit.

-For the first time in team history, the first two games at Lambeau Field will be in primetime.

-The Packers will be tested early, as five of their first eight contests come against playoff teams in '07. They face just one '07 playoff team in their final eight games.

-Green Bay's bye week, which falls in Week 8, is the latest open date since 2004, when the bye fell in Week 9.

-This season's schedule rotation matches up arguably the strongest division in the AFC, the South, against the NFC North. The AFC South sent three teams to the postseason in '07 (Colts, Jaguars and Titans), and its teams finished a combined 42-22 (.656) last season.

-The Houston Texans will make their franchise debut at Lambeau Field in Week 14.

-December is getting a bit predictable for the Packers. For the fifth straight season, they travel to Chicago and host Detroit.

-Though start times are subject to change due to NFL flexible scheduling, the Packers are slated for 10 noon starts. That's down from a year ago, when they kicked off 13 times (including Thanksgiving) at noon.

Week 1: Mon., Sept. 8, Minnesota Vikings, 6 p.m., ESPN

Week 2: Sun.; Sept. 14, at Detroit Lions, noon, Fox

Week 3: Sun., Sept. 21, Dallas Cowboys, 7:15 p.m., NBC

Week 4: Sun., Sept. 28, at Tampa Bay Buccaneers, noon, Fox

Week 5: Sun., Oct. 5, Atlanta Falcons, noon, Fox

Week 6: Sun., Oct. 12, at Seattle Seahawks, 3:15 p.m., Fox

Week 7: Sun., Oct. 19, Indianapolis Colts, 3:15 p.m., CBS

Week 8: Sun., Oct. 26, Bye

Week 9: Sun., Nov. 2, at Tennessee Titans, noon, Fox

Week 10: Sun., Nov. 9, at Minnesota Vikings, noon, Fox

Week 11: Sun., Nov. 16, Chicago Bears, noon, Fox

Week 12: Mon., Nov. 24, at New Orleans Saints, 7:30 p.m., ESPN

Week 13: Sun., Nov. 30, Carolina Panthers, noon, Fox

Week 14: Sun., Dec. 7, Houston Texans, noon, CBS

Week 15: Sun., Dec. 14, at Jacksonville Jaguars, noon, Fox

Week 16: Mon., Dec. 22, at Chicago Bears, 7:30 p.m., ESPN

Week 17: Sun., Dec. 28, Detroit Lions, noon, Fox

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