Regardless of how anyone else felt in 1929, Arthur W. Bystrom was upbeat about the football team from the NFL’s smallest city.
The late sportswriter for the Press-Gazette wrote: “The eleventh campaign in the quest for the honors in the professional football world will be opened by the Green Bay Packers at the City Stadium tomorrow. It will be launched by a squad of men that promises to be one of the most powerful ever seen in Packer togs.”
In the off-season, Head Coach Curly Lambeau had signed guard August (Mike) Michalske, tackle Robert (Cal) Hubbard and halfback Johnny (Blood) McNally. All three eventually found their way to Canton, Ohio.
But still, could Green Bay, which had finished fourth in 1928, hope to compete with teams from Chicago to New York?
Nine weeks into the season, Green Bay was unbeaten. The team had given up just 16 points. Yet the Giants had kept pace, forging an 8-0-1 record.
On Nov. 24, The Packers and Giants clashed in New York’s Polo Grounds. Bo Molenda passed to Hurdis McCrary for an early 7-0 Packers’ lead, but the Giants countered with a Bennie Friedman to Tony Plansky touchdown pass. Green Bay clung to a 7-6 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
In that period, Molenda and Blood plowed into the end zone as Green Bay stopped the Gotham 11, 20-6. The loss was the only suffered all year by the Giants.
Green Bay went on to tie Frankford the following week, then wrapped up its only unbeaten season ever with wins over Providence and the Chicago Bears. With a 12-0-1 record and an NFL championship under its belt, the team from the little town erased any doubts about its competitive ability.