Packers' preseason opponents revealed

The Packers will host the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots as part of a four-game preseason schedule released Wednesday by the National Football League.<p>

The game in Lambeau Field will be played on the third weekend of the preseason.

The Packers will begin preseason play at home in a nationally televised game (ESPN, 7 p.m. CDT) against the San Diego Chargers. They will then will travel to play the Buffalo Bills, host the Patriots, and play at Tennessee before the regular season begins.

The first preseason week will begin on August 11 and end on the 15th. Week Two will stretch from August 18-22, the third week of games will be played from August 25-29 and the preseason will end with games on the September 1-2, a Thursday and Friday.

Once the Packers and their opponents reach agreements on specific game dates and times for the final three contests, probably by the end of March, the Packers will identify Green and Gold package games. The Green package game, for season-ticket holders from Green Bay, will serve as the Bishop's Charities Game, along with the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. The Gold package game, for season-ticket holders from Milwaukee, will serve as the annual Upper Midwest Shrine Game.

Green Bay will face San Diego for only the second time during the preseason. In 1980 at the Hall of Fame Game in Canton, Ohio, severe lightning ended a scoreless game with 5:29 remaining.

The last preseason meeting between Green Bay and Buffalo was in 1997 at SkyDome in Toronto. The Packers' last trip to Buffalo was in 2000 for Mike Sherman's second regular-season game as head coach. Green Bay also played two non-league games in Buffalo against other foes, the Boston Yanks in 1944 and the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1951.

New England and Green Bay have met 12 times in the preseason, most recently at Lambeau Field on July 31, 1997, six months after the Packers defeated the Patriots in Super Bowl XXXI. This marks the sixth time during the Brett Favre era (1992-2005) Green Bay has played a preseason game with the Patriots.

For the fourth straight year, the Packers will close the preseason against the Tennessee Titans, ending the teams' agreement. Last season, the Packers also played their final tuneup at the Coliseum in Nashville.

The NFL exhibition schedule kicks off Saturday, Aug. 6, when Atlanta and Indianapolis play the American Bowl in Tokyo (ESPN). On Aug. 8, Chicago and Miami meet in the Hall of Fame Game on ABC.

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