Sports

Ich Bin Ein Cheesehead: A Photo Guide To Caring That The Packers Won

Jarrett Bush of the Green Bay Packers chills out during the first half of Sunday's NFC Championship Game against the Chicago Bears on January 23, 2011. i i

Jarrett Bush of the Green Bay Packers chills out during the first half of Sunday's NFC Championship Game against the Chicago Bears on January 23, 2011. Doug Pensinger/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
Jarrett Bush of the Green Bay Packers chills out during the first half of Sunday's NFC Championship Game against the Chicago Bears on January 23, 2011.

Jarrett Bush of the Green Bay Packers chills out during the first half of Sunday's NFC Championship Game against the Chicago Bears on January 23, 2011.

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

I know that many of you are not football fans. Many of you don't care that the Packers (and the Steelers, but: whatever) won the right last night to go to the Super Bowl in two weeks.

I want to help you enjoy it a little. Perhaps invest. Perhaps feel some of the joy of caring about the story of a football game, without the effort, time commitment, or beer consumption involved in actually watching football. So I thought I would share with you what a game like this looks like if you actually do care about it, which ... surprisingly enough, as it turns out, I do.

Despite having spent years in the Twin Cities and therefore having a Batman-upon-Joker level of theoretical disdain for the Green Bay Packers, I have been brainwashed by enough Packer-liking associates that this is apparently the team I root for now. So now: How The Packers Made It To The Super Bowl, Because Apparently I Care About This Now.

The first thing you should know about this game was that it was very, very cold (see above).

A Green Bay Packers fan makes his feelings known before the game begins. i i

A Green Bay Packers fan makes his feelings known before the game begins. Andy Lyons/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Andy Lyons/Getty Images
A Green Bay Packers fan makes his feelings known before the game begins.

A Green Bay Packers fan makes his feelings known before the game begins.

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

The second thing you should know about this game is that this guy was there. Because you cannot have a Packer game without this guy. That is the law.

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers enjoys a third-quarter Championship Game moment. i i

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers enjoys a third-quarter Championship Game moment. Andy Lyons/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Andy Lyons/Getty Images
Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers enjoys a third-quarter Championship Game moment.

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers enjoys a third-quarter Championship Game moment.

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

This is Aaron Rodgers, the Packers quarterback. His motto is, "I enjoy winning, and not so much being asked questions about how big Brett Favre's shoes are. I acknowledge that they are large shoes. Let's move on."

Bear Danieal Manning (#38) can't quite reach Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who dives for the pylon on a one-yard touchdown run  in the first quarter. i i

Bear Danieal Manning (#38) can't quite reach Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who dives for the pylon on a one-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. Jamie Squire/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Jamie Squire/Getty Images
Bear Danieal Manning (#38) can't quite reach Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who dives for the pylon on a one-yard touchdown run  in the first quarter.

Bear Danieal Manning (#38) can't quite reach Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who dives for the pylon on a one-yard touchdown run in the first quarter.

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

His other motto is, "Sometimes when you want something done right, you have to do it yourself." Here, he has nobody to throw the ball to, so he just runs it in for the touchdown himself. Self-reliance! Just like Ralph Waldo Emerson, and also Steve Young.

The Bears' starting quarterback, Jay Cutler, on the sideline in the third quarter after leaving the game with a knee injury. i i

The Bears' starting quarterback, Jay Cutler, on the sideline in the third quarter after leaving the game with a knee injury. Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
The Bears' starting quarterback, Jay Cutler, on the sideline in the third quarter after leaving the game with a knee injury.

The Bears' starting quarterback, Jay Cutler, on the sideline in the third quarter after leaving the game with a knee injury.

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

This is Jay Cutler, the quarterback for the Bears. Even many Bears fans do not particularly care for Jay Cutler. He left the game in the third quarter, citing a knee injury, leaving the game to the second- and third-string QBs. Nobody except a man and his doctor knows whether he was right to leave the game, but it is safe to say that it would be better for Cutler if he were not spotted playing golf or skiing any time soon. But what really makes this photo, taken after he was out of the game? Even his hat is sad. Jay Cutler's hat already knows that the Bears are going to lose. The hat has packed it in already.

Packers defensive back Sam Shields comes down with a second-quarter interception as the intended receiver, the Bears' Johnny Knox, comes up empty. i i

Packers defensive back Sam Shields comes down with a second-quarter interception as the intended receiver, the Bears' Johnny Knox, comes up empty. Doug Pensinger/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Doug Pensinger/Getty Images
Packers defensive back Sam Shields comes down with a second-quarter interception as the intended receiver, the Bears' Johnny Knox, comes up empty.

Packers defensive back Sam Shields comes down with a second-quarter interception as the intended receiver, the Bears' Johnny Knox, comes up empty.

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

What made this play amazing — and what makes it a great photo — is that this captures a wonderful moment during which Sam Shields already had the ball, and Johnny Knox still thought it was coming. He's waiting! His arms outstretched! "Come to me, ball!" says Johnny Knox. "I am busy," says the ball. "I am hanging out with Sam Shields."

B.J. Raji, the Packers' 337-pound nose tackle, exults after  scoring the first touchdown of his NFL career, a 18-yard interception return in the fourth quarter that provided the margin of victory. i i

B.J. Raji, the Packers' 337-pound nose tackle, exults after scoring the first touchdown of his NFL career, a 18-yard interception return in the fourth quarter that provided the margin of victory. Andy Lyons/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Andy Lyons/Getty Images
B.J. Raji, the Packers' 337-pound nose tackle, exults after  scoring the first touchdown of his NFL career, a 18-yard interception return in the fourth quarter that provided the margin of victory.

B.J. Raji, the Packers' 337-pound nose tackle, exults after scoring the first touchdown of his NFL career, a 18-yard interception return in the fourth quarter that provided the margin of victory.

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

This is B.J. Raji, who is, among other things, turning into the latest giant dude the Packers can put in when they are going for short yardage. Meaning, effectively, he is Wall Man: The Man Who Acts As A Wall. What was more surprising was seeing him intercept a pass and run it back to the end zone before executing a little dance. It's the little B.J. Raji dance that I like to call "Look, I Am A Giant Hot Dog."

Donald Driver, Ryan Pickett celebrate the Packers' win. i i

Donald Driver (#80) and Ryan Pickett (#79) celebrate after the Packers iced a 21-14 victory over the Chicago Bears in the NFC Championship Game. Andy Lyons/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Andy Lyons/Getty Images
Donald Driver, Ryan Pickett celebrate the Packers' win.

Donald Driver (#80) and Ryan Pickett (#79) celebrate after the Packers iced a 21-14 victory over the Chicago Bears in the NFC Championship Game.

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Here, after the win, Donald Driver jumps on the back of Ryan Pickett, screaming the following: "WHY DID WE LET BRETT FAVRE GO? WHY, WHY, WHY? WE ARE LOST WITHOUT THE GUNSLINGER! HE WAS LIKE A KID OUT THERE! LEFT IT ALL ON THE FIELD! WHERE DID WE GO WRONG? AARON RODGERS WILL AMOUNT TO NOTHING! " Okay, he probably was not saying that at all.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and Terms of Use. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.