Game Notes: Packers vs. Detroit Lions 10/1/1944

The 2-0 Packers hosted the 0-0 Lions at the State Fairgrounds in Milwaukee on October 1, 1944. Led by tailback Frankie Sinkwich and center Alex Wojciechowicz, the Lions would have a successful 6-3-1 season, but not on their opening day. The Lions ran their own version of a shift offense, continually coming out in a T with Sinkwich under center before shifting to the single wing. Middle screens were part of their game plan this day, and the Lions moved easily at the start. After intercepting a Packer pass that went right through the hands of Don Hutson, a 34-yard toss from Sinkwich to end Dave Diehl took them to the Packer five, and a Sinkwich toss to halfback Bob Westfall earned Detroit an early six-point lead a play later. Pete Tinsley blocked the extra point. At the end of the quarter, the Lions were on the Green Bay one.

Opening the second quarter with fourth and goal, the Lions went for the touchdown, but Don Hutson broke through to nab Sinkwich at the five and Charley Brock helped bring him to the ground. From that point on it was the Packers’ game. After an exchange of punts, the Packers scored in the second quarter on a Lou Brock touchdown pass to Paul Duhart. Joe Laws intercepted another Lions pass, but another pass bobbled by Hutson was picked off by the Lions. In fact, Hutson, would drop a third pass before the end of the half but the Packers maintained a 7-6 lead.

A long drive in the third quarter was culminated by an 11-yard gallop up the middle by Ted Fritsch and a 14-6 lead. Later in the quarter, Larry Craig picked off another Lion pass and returned it 20 yards to the Detroit 13. Three plays later, Irv Comp hit Hutson for a three-yard touchdown and a 20-6 lead (Hutson’s PAT was blocked.)

The Packers added a fourth touchdown in the final quarter on an 11-yard pass from Lou Brock to Irv Comp following a long drive to make the final score 27-6 Green Bay.

Several plays were missing from the film, but I saw Hutson line up 49 times on offense, and he was flexed or split wide on 27 of them. On the eight plays without Hutson on the field, only twice was a Packer end split away from the line. There were also two plays when Hutson lined up tight, but Harry Jacunski, the other end, was split wide, and halfback Joe Laws was spread as a flanker.

1944pduhart2  1944ptinsleyc

1944dhutsonc  1944hjacunskic

1944cbrockc  1944lcraigc

All custom cards are colorized.

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