Two years after he co-founded the Packers with Curly Lambeau, George Calhoun began writing a piece called The Dope Sheet, which served as the official press release and game program from 1921-24.
Honoring Calhoun, the first publicity director, the Packers are running this weekly feature as their release, which is being made available to fans exclusively on Packers.com.
A complete edition of the Dope Sheet will be available each week during the season in PDF format, located in the Packers.com Game Centers.
Here are some highlights from the Week 15 Dope Sheet:
THIS WEEK'S NOTABLE STORYLINES:
-Green Bay plays its first franchise game on Christmas Day. The Packers host the Bears in an intriguing nationally televised contest.
-The Packers could deliver their long-time rivals a significant blow in the NFC North race.
-It's Lovie Smith's first trip to Lambeau Field since he established beating the Packers as his No. 1 goal, and delivered on Sept. 19, 2004.
-The Packers are 19-4 against Chicago since 1994, one of the most successful stretches vs. a single opponent in NFL history.
-Brett Favre starts his 100th game at historic Lambeau Field.
-Mike Sherman is 9-1 in division games when given the opportunity to avenge a loss from earlier in the season.
TELEVISION: FOX Sports, now in its 12th season as an NFL network television partner, will air the contest to a regional audience. Play-by-play man Sam Rosen joins color commentator Bill Maas, who also serves as the Packers' preseason television analyst after closing his 10-year NFL career on the Green Bay defensive line in 1993. Chris Myers reports from the sidelines while producer Mike Burks teams up with director Rich Russo in the truck.
PACKERS RADIO: Milwaukee's WTMJ (620 AM), airing Green Bay games since 1929, heads up the 62-station Packers Radio Network, with versatile Wayne Larrivee (play-by-play) and two-time Packers Pro Bowler Larry McCarren (color). Spanning five states, the network covers 50 markets in the upper Midwest. The broadcast also is available to NFL Field Pass subscribers on packers.com.
-NFL Sirius Radio subscribers all over the world also can catch the Packers network broadcast on Channel 127.
THE DOPE ON THIS WEEK'S OPPONENT:
Packers vs. Decatur Staleys/Chicago Bears:
All-time regular season: 78-85-6
All-time, Lambeau Field: 27-19-0 Last meeting, regular season: Dec. 4, Soldier Field; Bears won, 19-7
Last meeting, Lambeau Field: Sept. 19, 2004; Bears won, 21-10
Playoff meeting: Dec. 14, 1941, Wrigley Field, NFL Western Division playoff; Bears won, 33-14
Mike Sherman: 58-42--0, .580, sixth NFL season, sixth with Packers
Lovie Smith: 15-15-0, .500, second NFL season, second with Bears
Head to Head: Smith leads, 2-1
vs. Opponent: Sherman 8-3 vs. Bears; Smith 2-1 vs. Packers
MIKE SHERMAN...Is in his sixth year as the Packers' 13th head coach.
-Is no stranger to adversity, having overcome several hurdles each of the past three seasons to win a trio of NFC North titles.
-Since the 1993 collective bargaining agreement, teams have made nearly 90 coaching changes and only Sherman's tenure produced winning records in each of its first five seasons.
-Over their first five regular seasons as an NFL coach, since 1970 only Chuck Knox, George Seifert, Joe Gibbs and Mike Ditka produced better records than Sherman (53-27, .663).
-In 2004, his team became only the ninth in NFL history to reach the playoffs after a 1-4 start.
-Has led the Packers to three straight division titles and four consecutive playoff appearances.
-Is 6-1 against teams in the Super Bowl the previous season.
LOVIE SMITH...like Sherman is the 13th head coach in his franchise's history, officially joining the Bears Jan. 15, 2004. He has 22 years experience as a coach, combined at the college and pro levels.
-Smith joined the Bears from the St. Louis Rams, where he spent three seasons (2001-03) as defensive coordinator and molded one of the league's top units. He helped the club return to the Super Bowl in 2001. Last season, his unit was among league leaders in takeaways, defensive TDs and sacks.
-The Texas native has coached on playoff teams four of the last six years, and five of his nine NFL campaigns.
-Brett Favre and the Packers know Smith from his five seasons (1996-2000) as linebackers coach in Tampa Bay, where he helped turn around a defense that hadn't finished above 12th in the four seasons before his arrival. In Tampa, Smith coached under highly regarded defensive minds Tony Dungy and Monte Kiffin.
-A former All-American safety, Smith coached collegiately at Tulsa, Arizona State, Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio State and Wisconsin, where he tutored linebackers in 1987.
THE PACKERS-BEARS SERIES: These teams mark meeting No. 170 in another chapter of one of sports' greatest rivalries.
-The Packers' recent run against Chicago (21 wins in last 26 meetings) has sent shockwaves through the history of the series. Before the run, the Bears led the NFL's richest rivalry by 23 games, 80-57-6. Now, Chicago's lead is only seven, 85-78-6. The last time the gap was as close? The end of World War II and the Don Hutson era, 1945, when the Packers trailed 27-20-5.
-The last time Green Bay led the series? On the heels of its three straight NFL championships, 1932, when the Packers led 11-10-5. Two months after Babe Ruth allegedly called his shot at Wrigley Field in the '32 World Series, the Bears stole from Green Bay a fourth straight title (which at the time was determined by league standings). Chicago barely finished atop the league standings, which unlike today did not count ties. Had the league counted ties in standings, the Packers would have won. The next year, 1933, the NFL began determining its champion with postseason games.
-The Packers meet Lovie Smith for the fourth time as Bears head coach. Smith on Jan. 15, 2004, elevated one of sports' richest rivalries to another level, saying his No. 1 goal, ahead of winning the division and Super Bowl, was to beat Green Bay. He won on Sept. 19, 2004.
-The Packers went 18-2 against Chicago from 1994-2003. On only four occasions in NFL history has a team enjoyed a better 20-game stretch against a single opponent.
-Green Bay against Smith during his career as an NFL coach is 9-7 (all Brett Favre starts).
Other notable connections...Green Bay running backs coach Edgar Bennett finished his playing career in Chicago (1998-99)...Bears running backs coach Tim Spencer played with the late Reggie White, the Packers' all-time sacks leader, with Memphis of the USFL in 1985...Offensive coordinator Tom Rossley spent two seasons (1997-98) as a Bears assistant...The late Mark Hatley, the Bears' top personnel executive from 1998-2001, also coached Lovie Smith in 1976 at Tulsa...Smith was a Wisconsin assistant in 1987...Long-snapper Rob Davis held that role for the Bears in 1996...Antonio Chatman played for the Arena League's Chicago Rush...Bears LB Hunter Hillenmeyer was taken by Green Bay in the fifth round of the 2003 NFL Draft...Rookies Samkon Gado (Green Bay) and Airese Currie (Bears) are products of Columbia, S.C., high schools; Gado graduated from Ben Lippen High School, Currie from Richland Northeast...Gado and his family actually lived in Wheaton, Ill., a Chicago suburb, briefly during the running back's infancy, before returning to Nigeria...Bears quarterbacks coach Wade Wilson joined the Falcons in 1992, after Atlanta dealt Brett Favre to Green Bay.
LAST MEETING (AP): Dec. 4, Soldier Field; Bears won, 19-7:
-The Bears beat the Packers at Soldier Field for the first time since 1993, assisted by game-changing interceptions from Charles Tillman and Nathan Vasher. Tillman returned the first interception just before halftime 95 yards to set up one of Robbie Gould's four field goals, and Vasher took a late interception 45 yards for a TD to seal the victory.
-The Bears prevented Brett Favre from throwing a TD pass against them - he'd done so in an NFL-record 26 straight games - and sacked him twice on hard hits from blitzing Tillman and Mike Brown.
-The Packers were driving for the lead near the end of the first half when Tillman intercepted Favre in the end zone and raced 95 yards before Tony Fisher saved a touchdown and knocked him out at the 7 with six seconds left in the half. Gould's third field goal, a 25-yarder, gave the Bears a 9-7 halftime lead.
-Favre had never looked better than just before the interception, completing 7 of 8 passes to move the Packers from their own 18 to the Bears 7, even throwing a nice block to lead Antonio Chatman's 11-yard reverse against the NFL's top-rated defense. But with Brown in his face, Favre lofted up a pass for Robert Ferguson and Tillman picked it off. Favre said he was trying to throw the ball away but didn't get enough on it as he was being pressured.
-Trailing 12-7 late in the game after Gould missed a field goal, the Packers tried to mount a final drive when Favre hit back-to-back passes. But Vasher - who earlier in the season returned a missed field goal 108 yards, the longest play in NFL history - was there again, stepping in front of a sideline pass for Donald Driver and racing in for the TD with 3:06 left.
-Favre dropped to 21-6 in his career against the Bears and 11-2 at Soldier Field.
-The Bears didn't convert a third down in the game (0-for-10) and Muhsin Muhammad had no catches for the first time since 2002, a span of 51 overall games and 47 in the regular season.
-Nick Barnett's recovery of a fumble by Jones got the Packers started on an eight-play, 60-yard drive. Driver made a great catch of a third-and-2 pass and Samkon Gado ran in on second down for a 7-3 lead -- the Packers' only score.
LAST MEETING, LAMBEAU FIELD (AP): Sept. 19, 2004; Bears won, 21-10:
-Lovie Smith didn't take long to fulfill his No. 1 goal of beating Green Bay. Mike Brown's 95-yard fumble return for a touchdown sparked the Bears' win, Chicago's third victory in 21 games against its archrivals.
-Brett Favre threw two interceptions, but the play of the game was Ahman Green's fumble just before halftime. On first down from the 2 just after the 2-minute warning, linebacker Brian Urlacher stormed into the backfield and stripped Green. Brown scooped it up and rumbled 95 yards down the Bears' jubilant sideline to give Chicago a 14-3 halftime lead instead of a 10-7 deficit.
-The Packers weren't demoralized by the 14-point swing, linebacker Nick Barnett insisted, but Green Bay never recovered in losing its second straight home opener. Barnett nearly got his own TD return after recovering David Terrell's fumble with 4 minutes remaining, but right tackle John Tait prevented the score with a lunging tackle at midfield. "I just got tripped up," Barnett said. "If he would have missed me, it would have turned the whole game around, that's how close it was."
-Favre broke Dan Marino's NFL record of 24 touchdowns against a single opponent. Green also tied Jim Taylor's franchise record with a 26th career 100-yard rushing game. The Packers had 234 yards and just three points in the first half.