Green Bay Packers vs. Detroit Lions: When Was the Last Meaningful Meeting Between the Teams?

The Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions are all too familiar with each other as they head into Sunday night’s season finale with plenty on the line. The teams have met 186 times over the years, with the Packers getting the best of the series with a 105-74-7 record.

Sunday’s matchup could be key for both teams. It certainly will be big for the Packers, who can erase all memories of a tough season with a victory. A win over the Lions puts Green Bay in the playoffs, while the Lions would get in with a victory and a little help.

The Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions have had some memorable meetings throughout the years

Green Bay Packers running back Ty Montgomery (88) and Detroit Lions linebacker Josh Bynes (57) have words after a play during a game on Jan. 1, 2017, at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan. | Scott Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images.

While many of the games between the division rivals haven’t been much to talk about, the Packers and Lions have had some memorable meetings during their long history.

One of the craziest games came on Oct. 7, 1945, when Green Bay scored 41 points in the second quarter after the Lions jumped out to a 7-0 lead. Don Hutson caught four touchdown passes in that quarter, a record that still stands.

On Jan. 8, 1994, the Packers and Lions met for the first of their two playoff meetings. The teams had played in the final game of the regular season, with the Lions winning and securing the home playoff game. Brett Favre hit wide receiver Sterling Sharpe with a touchdown pass in the final minute to give the Packers a 28-24 victory.

On Nov. 15, 2015, the Lions survived a frantic Packers comeback attempt. After Green Bay scored a late touchdown and failed to convert on a two-point conversion to cut Detroit’s lead to 18-16, the Packers needed to pull off a desperation onside kick. They did but couldn’t convert on a long field goal attempt as the Lions hung on for an 18-16 win. The victory was the first for the Lions in Green Bay since 1991.

When was the last meaningful game between the Packers and Lions?

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The Lions and Packers faced each other earlier this season in what was Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ worst game of the year. Rodgers threw three interceptions in a 15-9 loss. The victory for the Lions began a string of six wins in seven games and saw them go from 1-6 to 7-7. The Lions could earn a playoff berth if the Los Angeles Rams beat the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday and then the Lions beat the Packers.

A Packers win would be their fifth straight after falling to 4-8 and would secure the NFC’s final playoff spot. The game was even flexed by the NFL, putting it in prime time.

You don’t have to go back too far to find the last time the two played in a meaningful game. That happened on Jan. 1, 2017, when they met with both teams sporting 9-6 records. Both teams were already in the playoffs, but the game was for the division title.

The Packers rallied from a four-point deficit at the half behind three touchdown passes from Rodgers. The Lions mounted a comeback attempt that fell short in a 31-24 Green Bay win. It was the fifth NFC North championship in six years for the Packers.