Packers.com Staff Writer Mike Spofford says yes.
It was impossible not to detect the angst in their emails and blog postings. The fans felt a bad day at the office was coming. The odds favored it. With every win, the odds increased.
The NFL realists were terrified that bad day at the office would come in the postseason, with everything on the line. Sure, perfection would be nice. Making history and achieving immortal status in the record books would be unforgettable.
But most fans didn’t want to play those odds, no matter how much faith they have in Mike McCarthy and Co. They wanted to get the bad day out of the way, while there was still time to recover from it, with the knowledge that McCarthy and Co. would recover from it. Of that, there is considerably less angst.
Remember, this is the same fan base that saw the Patriots go 18-0 four years ago, only to play a dud in the most important game. The fact that it just as easily could have been the Packers taking advantage of that dud has stuck with these fans. The Patriots were supposed to be unbeatable, only they weren’t.
Packers fans know the NFL, and they know there’s a reason only one team in the Super Bowl era has run the table, start to finish. It’s a long season, any given Sunday, and all that. They’re clichés because they’re true.
Packers fans didn’t want their beloved players distracted by all the perfection questions. In their minds, it’s as though with every question, the bubble came closer to bursting. Seeing it burst in mid-December, as opposed to mid-January, is just fine with them.
Now the questions can focus strictly on winning the whole thing again. That’s enough to worry about. That’s what matters most.
The “anything can happen” mantra applies ten-fold in the playoffs. Packers fans know that, too. The Packers were a No. 6 seed last year, going down to the final minute of the 16th game before earning their postseason bid, and then they did the improbable.
Anything can and will happen once again in this year’s playoffs. There’s no predicting anything. If a loss comes in the postseason, it will be for that reason, not because it felt inevitable against such tall odds, and that, frankly, is just easier to deal with.
Packers.com Editor Vic Ketchman says no.
Football means too much to Packers fans for them to ever think losing is good. To even suggest that a Packers fan is relieved that his team, in many cases the team he owns, lost a game is an outrage.
Please, those true Packers fans that are reading these words, know that I am on your side and I will not allow the wimpy among you to speak for this great “nation.” I saw you in the parking lot at Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday. I saw that cheese on your heads and I watched you shout words of encouragement through quivering lips to your fallen heroes as their buses pulled out of Arrowhead. I felt your grief.
You should be ashamed of yourself, Mike. These are your people. You know what it was like for them. They would’ve traded Christmas Day for a win over the Chiefs.
Relieved? This is the worst week of the whole year for Packers fans. Should the Packers beat the Bears on Sunday, the loss in Kansas City will have been the only time in 2011 (please, I don’t count preseason games) Packers fans would have tasted defeat.
So, folks, how did it taste? Did it taste like relief? I didn’t think so.
That law of averages stuff is for the wimpy, not the bold and courageous. Every Packers fan I know wanted to take a run at immortality.
I feel nothing but hurt. I wanted to cover something historical. I wanted my grandchildren to one day tell their children, “Your great grandfather covered the 19-0 Packers.”
This whole notion of now the Packers can win because they lost is Nutsville. That’s how people who are afraid of losing think. Real Packers fans don’t think about losing. Real Packers fans think the Packers are gonna win every game, and that’s the way it should be.
Relieved? No, they’re saddened.
Anybody reading these words, which is to say true Packers fans, knows what I’m saying to be the truth.
What do you think?