Does it seem like highlight shows hate the Packers? « Ol' Bag of Donuts

Does it seem like highlight shows hate the Packers?

I’ve resisted griping about this issue for a long time, since one of the first things they teach you in communications classes is to recognize biases and how they corrupt perceptions. But I’m going to go with it anyway.

I was watching one of NFL Network’s many, many Top 10 shows today — something about the Top 10 college football factories of all time — and it was like every player they showed was doing something against the Packers. I mean, Shaun Freaking Alexander, who went to Alabama and played for Seattle, only meeting up with the Packers a few times, got all of his highlights in the 2004 NFC Divisional Playoff Game. Really? He ran for 45 yards on 20 carries in that game. Three chip-shot touchdowns don’t do much for me.

Now, the Packers got their share of highlights, too (a few of Reggie from Tennessee, Starr and Hutson from Alabama, one shot of Desmond Howard and Charles Woodson each from Michigan, and one – or one more than there should have been- of A.J. Hawk from Ohio State). But if you’re going to show two Heisman winners from Michigan who had their best NFL moments with the Packers, is it too much to ask to get more than one shot? And one of Paul Hornung? One? The Packers should get some love in these things because they’ve had great players. That’s the point of them.

And this just scrapes the surface of the issue. Every time I see a highlight clip from the Vikings, it’s against the Packers -especially now that they’ve got ESPN’s favorite son. I might be totally wrong on this, but I see one team after the next getting feted by ESPN and the like with highlights of things they did against the Packers.

Is it because Green Bay has the smallest media market in pro sports, and theoretically the least to offer the New York media types? Maybe. But this is a national – nay, international – fanbase, and while Green Bay itself is tiny, the entire state of Wisconsin is watching every week. It’s one of the three or four marquee franchises in the league. Having seen enough New York media members look like they’re going to be sick every time they have to step outside the Big Apple, slighting Green Bay makes sense. Because why would anyone leave New York for the cold, snowy cow towns in Wisconsin? Oh, what’s that? Vince Lombardi would?

I have no data to prove any of this, and I apologize for the fanboy rant vibe of this post. The frequent visitors to OBOD know we don’t roll like that very often. But I’ve talked to enough Packers fans who are bugged by this trend that I wanted to throw it out there.

You know what we need? A Packers lobbying firm to count how many positive and negative images are shown of the Packers during a given week, kind of like they do with poltical ads during an election.

I’d love to hear from some others who have seen the anti-Packers bias on highlight shows. Unburden your soul. We’re here for you. Or tell me I’m completely wrong; that’s fine, too.

Just needed to get that off my chest. Good talk. Thanks.

–Gene Bosling

11 comments to Does it seem like highlight shows hate the Packers?

  • Gary

    I agree 100%. The thing I’ve noticed is that, when the Packers happen to be shown on NFL Replay (which is supposed to highlight the best games that week), it’s almost ALWAYS a game the Packers lost. Also, how many times do you see:

    - The 1998 Wild-card game vs. 49ers (Rice Fumble)
    - The 1995 NFCCG vs. Dallas
    - Super Bowl 32

    And any other ‘great game’ that the Pack came up on the short end of.

    If 75% of the Packer games NFL Network shows overall aren’t Packers losses, I’d be very surprised.

  • kluivertus

    I thought it was just me! EVERY time they show those slow-motion reels on NFL Tonight, it’s against the Pack, even in situations where the Pack were doing well the rest of the game!

  • [...] Gene at Ol’ Bag of Donuts asks why does it seem highlight shows hate the Packers? [...]

  • Chazman

    I don’t know, I used to be irked by the lack of Packer highlights or the plethora of Packer foibles when they show other teams and then I came to the realization that the more they showed the Packers, the more they hyped the Packers (when Judas was here), the worse the Packers did in reality. Now I’ve decided that flying under the ESPN radar is a good thing, I don’t have to listen to prognosticators of pap tell me their opinions about a team they know nothing about.
    Now if they only would take the Packers off of the other team highlights . . .

  • Tim

    It’s funny, I was just thinking the same thing the other day when they showed a Judas clip against the Packers for no apparent reason. I’m not sure if it’s because we’re Packer fans and we just notice our team more than say, the Jaguars, or if they just have it out for us. I wonder if other teams’ fans feel the same way.

    The only time I wanna watch another team have success is if they had highlights that showed everytime Judas got sacked or got hit hard when he was in Green Bay. In fact, I think I would buy it on DVD.

  • The yooper

    I go back the saying any publicity is good publicity. At least people are thinking about us. I’m with you I believe we are over represented in these clips by a wide margin.

  • Jeremy

    I don’t agree or disagree with you. Don’t really have an opinion. Two things though…

    1. You probably only see it this way because you’re a Packer fan and of course, when they pop up, you are going to take extra notice. Maybe it is as bad as you are saying, but maybe you just recognize all of it. The same could be said for other teams, but naturally, being a Packer fan, you wouldn’t really notice it. Nothing wrong with that…just making an observation.

    2. A blog entry about a bias in highlight shows? You know you’re on a football blog in late June when…


  • Scott

    The only replay I’m interested in seeing this year, is the one where CM3 blindsides Bert and snaps his arm. I’d be willing to watch that all day.

  • Gary: I agree on the games. One solution, though, would be to stop losing so many games in gut-wrenching fashion. Given the New York/Green Bay thing, I’m surprised we haven’t seen the 2007 NFC Championship Game more. If we could avoid that, or something like last year’s loss…yeah, I think I’d be fine with that.

  • James

    ESPN is old and tired. Boomer & company are miffed because they don’t get to stay at 5 star hotels and Packer personnel doesn’t roll out the red carpet & coddle them when they visit Green Bay, just do like the growing number of NFL fans are doing. Switch to NFL Network.

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