Aaron Rodgers was sacked eight times in the "Fail Mary" game of a couple of seasons agao. Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-USA TODAY Sports photograph

Green Bay Packers in 3 of top 14 games of 2014

Julius Peppers won't have to chase Packers players anymore. Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports photograph

Julius Peppers won’t have to chase Packers players anymore. Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports photograph


NFL.com’s Elliot Harrison, in preparation of today’s regular season schedule release, narrowed down the top 14 projected games of 2014 – three of which involve the Green Bay Packers.

Quarterback Tom Brady and the New England Patriots come to Green Bay in 2014. Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports photograph

Harrison tabs the New England Patriots at Green Bay at number eight on the list and has this to say about the matchup:

Another dandy inter-conference tilt takes place at the stadium that has hosted more games than any other house in pro football. It’s a rare day when these clubs meet. Last time we saw this matchup was at Foxborough in 2010, when the Patriots unleashed a gamebreaker in Dan Connolly, and Matt Flynn (filling in for an injured Aaron Rodgers) couldn’t get a play in from the sideline to save his life. But hey, that’s football. This time around, hopefully we’ll be treated to what is perhaps the best QB mano a mano in the NFL: Brady vs. Rodgers. Oh, and with reigning Offensive Rookie of the YearEddie Lacy coming straight downhill at the Patriots, we’ll see if Bill Belichick has whipped a suspect run defense into shape.

Next on the list is the Packers when they travel to Chicago to take on the Bears. This is always an event. Harrison has this to say about this annual brawl:

Remember Week 17 last season? Who could forget that stuff (like, the stuff of legend)? Aaron Rodgers, finally healthy, evading pressure on fourth-and-8 before uncorking a deep ball over another mediocre Bears safety … and into the waiting arms of Randall Cobb with less than a minute to go. What a way to win the NFC North for the PackersMarc Trestman‘s Bears, however, have retooled in an attempt to close a gap that appears to be this narrow. Will the acquisitions of Jared Allen and Lamarr Houston be enough? On the other side, what will former Bears standout Julius Peppersgive Green Bay? Honestly, though, this matchup doesn’t even need juicy subplots. After all, we are talking about the 95-year-old league’s 94-year-old rivalry.

And if that’s not enough, we’ve got one more – the Packers at the Seattle Seahawks. Rated at number four on the list, I might have put this one a notch or two or three higher. What can we say? It’s the Packers trying to knock the world champs from their throne – the same team whose meteoric rise to Super Bowl champion last season can be traced back directly to the “Fail Mary.”

Anyway, this is how Harrison describes this one:

Hopefully this game doesn’t fail me; pulled a Golden Tate and shoved several other tantalizing 2014 matchups out of the way for this baby. Packers at Seahawks instantly calls to mind one of the most famous sports endings in recent memory, and certainly the most controversial. Besides all that, though, Green Bay should be a serious contender, the type of team that can really push the defending Super Bowl champions. Packers-Seahawks has the potential to pack some serious cachet — stuff that goes way beyond the myriad “Fail Mary” vignettes we’ll be bombarded with leading up to the game. Will Aaron Rodgers have enough time in the pocket to bombard the Legion of Boom? He took eight sacks in that infamous 2012 contest.

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