Lambeau Field is one of the least hospitable venues for any NFL team to visit. As strange as it might seem, Andy Reid gets the Packers Monday night right where he wants them: in Lambeau with winter fast approaching.
No NFL team is close to the Eagles when it has come to winning road games in the 21st century. Under Reid's even-handed direction the Eagles own a 21-7 regular-season record on the road since 2000, a .741 winning percentage that dwarfs that of runner-up Pittsburgh (17-11, .630).
Moreover, the Eagles have been the NFL's winningest team in November and December since 2000 with a mark of 21-5, slightly better than the Packers' 20-7.
This will be the Eagles' fourth road game in five starts. After losing two at home to open the season, they've gone 5-1 counting road victories at Buffalo, the Giants and Atlanta.
The Packers, who are 14-14 on the road under Mike Sherman, are 13-1 at home in November and December since he took over.
"I'd say that historically not many people get on the bus outside (Lambeau Field) happy," an assistant coach for a recent Eagles' opponent said. "It ain't easy there but I think the Eagles' arrow is pointing up. They haven't played as well as in the past but you've got to give them credit for holding it together with all the injuries."
Nine of the Eagles' 21 road victories have been as an underdog, topped by the 7-point line they overcame last November in San Francisco. Reid, a 4-point underdog when he lost at Lambeau Field, 6-3, in Week 3 of 2000, is a 4 1/2-point underdog Monday night.
What's also of interest is that five of Reid's seven road losses were by 3 points or less. The Eagles' recent road success was preceded by their 1-22-1 run of road futility from 1997-'99.
"The Eagles are not an incredibly difficult team to defend," an assistant for another recent Eagles' foe said. "I would have a hard time not picking Green Bay but I think Philadelphia's a tough team. They fight hard and they're well-coached."
SERIES HISTORY: The 32nd regular-season meeting. The Packers lead, 22-9.
GREEN DELIVERS: Perhaps no Packers player was under more pressure Sunday night than running back Ahman Green.
To put it simply, Green hasn't been able to hang on to the football this season. Five fumbles in seven games, including four lost, had been killing the Packers at the most inopportune times.
Two weeks ago, after a loss at St. Louis, coach Mike Sherman guaranteed that Green's fumbling problem would be fixed. On Sunday night, when the Packers defeated the Minnesota Vikings, 30-27, it was fixed.
Green carried 21 times for 137 yards and caught five passes for 52. He didn't fumble once.
"I'm more proud of him for not turning the ball over on that turf," running backs coach Sylvester Croom said. "They hit us hard. It was humid in there for those guys. We did a great job of protecting the football. They were grabbing at us all night."
The Packers amassed 261 yards on the ground, their highest total since Week 5 in 1985 when Gerry Ellis and Eddie Lee Ivery led a 285-yard assault against Detroit.
"I'm as proud of this group as any group I've ever coached since I've been in the business," said Croom, who began as a college coach in 1976 before moving into the NFL in 1987.
The Packers weren't able to run effectively in a 30-25 loss to the Vikings at Lambeau Field on opening day. Afterward, defensive tackle Chris Hovan said the Vikings were the more physical team.
"They challenged us from the point of being physical," Croom said. "Some of the things they said. They did challenge us as an offensive team about our physicalness.
"Hey, we were committed to running the football tonight. That was the game plan. We wanted to be able to get outside on 'em but we still had our power game. We never get away from that."