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Packers-Patriots Press Box Notes


TONIGHT: The Packers conclude their home portion of the preseason slate against the defending Super Bowl champion Patriots...The contest marks the annual Bishop's Charities game, a Lambeau Field tradition in its fifth decade...Green Bay has dropped two straight in the Bishop's series, including a loss to the Seahawks in 2004, after winning the previous 12 in a row...All 32 teams are required to reduce their rosters to 65 players (excluding exemptions) by 3 p.m. CDT Tuesday.

MOMENT OF SILENCE: Before tonight's national anthem, the stadium will recognize a moment of silence for Thomas Herrion, the San Francisco 49ers lineman who passed away in Denver last weekend.

TONIGHT'S NATIONAL ANTHEM: Danielle Peck, a DreamWorks national recording artist, will perform our Star Spangled Banner.

BISHOP'S CHARITIES GAME: The Packers host the 45th annual Bishop's Charities Game. As part of pregame festivities, 2004 game MVP Cullen Jenkins will receive a plaque from David Zubik, Bishop of the Diocese of Green Bay. And after the coin toss, Donald Driver will catch the traditional first pass from the Bishop.

-In 1961, the Diocese of Green Bay approached Vince Lombardi about playing a second charitable contest in Green Bay (the Shrine game was already a fixture in Milwaukee).

-Lombardi, a devout Catholic, agreed to the contest. The original contract gave the Packers, their opponent and the church each one-third of the gate receipts.

-During the 1970s, the Packers and the church changed the contract so the Diocese would receive a flat donation, rather than a percentage.

-For more than 30 years, the church handled much of the game's business-related tasks, including game program and advertising sales, using a network of volunteers covering 14 Northeastern Wisconsin counties. The Packers assumed many of those tasks beginning in 1994.

-To date, the series has raised nearly $3.25 million.

ROSTER DATES: By Tuesday, the Packers need to reduce their roster by 13 players. Currently, the team lists 89 active players and following tonight's game must get down to 76 (the 65-player limit plus exemptions). The club has 11 roster exemptions, eight for players who returned from NFL Europe this summer, two bonus exemptions, and a commissioner's exemption for Bubba Franks...Following are NFL-mandated deadlines for reducing preseason rosters:

-Tuesday, by 3 p.m. CDT - To 65 players (excluding exemptions)

-Saturday, Sept. 3, by 5 p.m. CDT - To 53 players (all exemptions expire)

-Sunday, Sept. 4, after 11 a.m. CDT - Practice squads established

PACKERS.COM OFFERS FREE FANTASY FOOTBALL: Fantasy football comes to for the 2005 season as the Green Bay Packers and Time Warner Cable are teaming up to offer Home Team Challenge.

-The free program offers fantasy owners the chance to win Packers prizes on a weekly basis. The Packers grand prize is a trip for two to a road game in 2006. The NFL grand prize is a trip for two to Super Bowl XL in Detroit this February.

-For more information on rules, or to sign up, log on to and click the Home Team Challenge logo on the right side.

AT THE GATES: The team is distributing 2005 magnetic schedules, sponsored by McDonald's...Once the season concludes, the schedules pop out, leaving a magnetic frame.

HALFTIME ENTERTAINMENT: After the Coldwell Bankers "Take it to the House" promotion, local Pop Warner teams from the Duck Creek and East River programs will compete on the field.

POOL REPORTERS: As appointed by the Professional Football Writers of America, Cliff Christl of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel is the primary Lambeau Field pool reporter...Mike Vandermause of the Green Bay Press-Gazette is the alternate.

NEXT WEEK: Green Bay travels to Nashville to close a fourth consecutive preseason against the Titans; the teams, who square off Thursday at 7 p.m. CDT, also closed the '04 preseason at the Coliseum in Tennessee...The Patriots, who kick off the NFL's regular season at home vs. Oakland on Thursday, Sept. 8 (ABC), wrap up their preseason by hosting the N.Y. Giants, Thursday at 7 p.m. EDT.

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