Freeman a 49er killer

GREEN BAY - For big plays against the San Francisco 49ers, the Packers need to look no further than veteran wide receiver Antonio Freeman.<p> Freeman, in his seventh year with Green Bay, has had some banner games against the Niners, including the last time the two teams met in 1998. And the Packers could use another on Sunday, when the Packers and Niners square off in a NFC wildcard game at Lambeau Field.<p>

"We're excited about this playoff run," Freeman said. "Especially some of the veterans who were here in 1998. It's a good feeling again. We believe, and we take that out to the field. Our job as veterans is to make sure the younger guys know what's at stake in a game like this."

In January 1999, in an NFC wildcard game at 3Com Park, Freeman caught four passes for 75 yards and scored two touchdowns. His second score, a 15-yard catch from quarterback Brett Favre, gave Green Bay a 27-23 lead with 1:37 left in the game. That appeared to be the game-winner until Niners quarterback Steve Young found Terrell Owens in the end zone with three seconds left for a 30-27 Niners win.

Despite that loss, Freeman has been a constant thorn in the side of the Niners. In eight games against San Francisco, Freeman has caught 38 passes for 680 yards – a 17.8 yard average – and has scored seven touchdowns.

In three games he had more than 100 yards receiving, including an eye-popping, career-high 193 on Nov. 1, 1998 at Lambeau Field. In the Packers 36-22 win, Freeman scored two touchdowns, one 80 yards, the other 62 yards.

"You can't get caught up in the numbers with these two teams," Freeman said. "I think this team just has a will to win, a want to compete."

Last year, in the most recent regular season game between the two teams, Freeman caught six passes for 116 yards and had a 67-yard touchdown to help Green Bay win 31-28 at Lambeau.

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