A Look Back at the Packers-Cowboys Postseason Rivalry

The Green Bay Packers earned their seventh straight win on Sunday evening in front of a home crowd as they defeated the New York Giants in the Wild Card round, 38-13. The win for Green Bay was their first ever playoff victory over the Giants, who had ended the Packers’ Super Bowl hopes in 2008 and 2012.

Green Bay now enters the Divisional round of the NFL playoffs that features eight teams vying for a Super Bowl LI title. The three remaining teams alongside the Packers in the NFC bracket have all played Green Bay during the regular season. Green Bay lost to Atlanta in Week 8, 33-32. The loss was the first of Green Bay’s four-game midseason losing streak. However, the Packers were victorious over Seattle in Week 14, 38-10. The Atlanta Falcons will host the Seattle Seahawks in the Divisional round on Saturday.

As for Green Bay, they will travel to Arlington, Texas to play the Dallas Cowboys in AT&T Stadium. Green Bay lost at home to Dallas in Week 6 of the regular season, 30-16.

This will be the eighth postseason matchup between the Packers and Cowboys, dating back to 1967. Interestingly, Green Bay won two NFL Championships in the same calendar year in ‘67, both over the Dallas Cowboys.

In the first NFL game of the new year, the Green Bay Packers and Dallas Cowboys played at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Texas on Jan. 1, 1967. The winner of the contest were to be crowned as NFL champions and earned the right to play in the AFL-NFL Championship Game, later known as Super Bowl I.

Trailing 27-34, Dallas quarterback “Dandy Don” Meredith led the Cowboys to the Packers’ two-yard line with less than two minutes remaining. As overtime seemed a likely possibility, the Packers’ defense made a stand for the ages and held the Cowboys from scoring, concluding the game with a fourth-down interception in the endzone. Green Bay earned its tenth NFL Championship and would later go on to defeat the AFL Champion-Kansas City Chiefs, 35-10, in Super Bowl I.

One day short of a year later, the Packers and Cowboys faced off once again for the NFL Championship on Dec. 31, 1967. This became known as the fabled “Ice Bowl” due to the frigid temperatures that reached 13 below zero and a wind chill of -48. This was the coldest NFL game ever played.

Most football fans are familiar with the conclusion of the Ice Bowl, with Packers’ quarterback, Bart Starr, executing a quarterback sneak with 16 seconds left to give Green Bay a 21-17 victory and their eleventh NFL Championship. Two weeks later, the Packers and the AFL’s Oakland Raiders squared off in Super Bowl II, a 33-14 Green Bay victory.

It would be another 15 years before the Packers and Cowboys would face off in the postseason. It was only the second playoff appearance for Green Bay since the 1967 season. The Packers earned a 41-16 Wild Card victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in the opening round of the playoffs. However, the Cowboys ended the Packers’ championship hopes with a 37-26 victory in the Divisional round on Jan. 16, 1983.

Green Bay would not make another playoff appearance until 11 years later. In the early stages of the revival of the Packers organization, led by General Manager Ron Wolf and head coach Mike Holmgren, Green Bay was on its way to restoring a winning tradition in the 1990s. Key additions of quarterback Brett Favre and defensive end Reggie White were the cornerstones of this Packers’ team.

After defeating the Detroit Lions, 28-24, in the Wild Card round of the 1993 playoffs, the Packers were set to play the Cowboys in Texas on Jan. 16, 1994, exactly 11 years to the day since their previous playoff meeting.

Green Bay’s season ended in the Divisional round with a 27-17 defeat at the hands of the Cowboys, who went on to win Super Bowl XXVIII. Unfortunately for the Packers, it would be the first of three straight playoff defeats to the Dallas Cowboys.

The following season, Green Bay found itself once again defeating the Lions in the first round of the 1994 playoffs before heading to Texas Stadium in the Divisional round. The Cowboys eliminated the Packers from the playoffs once again, 35-9.

A year later, Green Bay found themselves just one game from their first Super Bowl appearance in 28 years. Following victories over the Atlanta Falcons and San Francisco 49ers, the Packers and Cowboys met in the 1995 NFC Championship Game at Texas Stadium. For the third straight season, the Cowboys sent the Packers home with a 38-27 victory on their way to a Super Bowl XXX title.

Green Bay hosted Dallas in the 2014 Divisional playoff game and came out with a 26-21 victory to send the Packers to the NFC Championship game.

The Packers and Cowboys are set to kickoff their Divisional playoff game on Sunday afternoon at 3:40 in Arlington, Texas. The winner of this contest will play either the Atlanta Falcons or Seattle Seahawks in the NFC Championship Game.


Justin Skiba is a local educator and former high school football coach. He lives in Sturgeon Bay, Wis. with his wife, Stephanie, and daughter, Delaney. Justin has a strong interest in history and sports

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