DECEMBER 16 (Milwaukee Journal) - The Packers,
almost to a man, consider the 49ers a "lucky" team.
Not that Green Bay's pros hold this against San
Francisco's Western Division co-champions. "You've got
to be lucky to get any place in this league," one Packer
said. Carlton Massey, defensive end turned linebacker
because of further injuries to the crippled Packers, said,
"The 49ers surprisingly don't hit hard at all - even as
hard as Pittsburgh. They're better than Pittsburgh, but
they don't hit as hard." Typical of the 49ers, they
engaged in a lot of coin flipping with Baltimore and the
Detroit Lions in case of ties for the Western Division
championship. The 49ers won only one flip - the one
which ha to do with a two way tie between Detroit and
San Francisco. That's how it came out, so they will
decide which Western Division team will face the
Cleveland Browns for the NFL championship in Kezar
Stadium here next Sunday. The Packers and their
coaches think Detroit has the better team but that San
Francisco will be tough to beat at home...Jerry Kramer,
guard from Idaho and Green Bay's fourth round draft
choice for next season, attended Sunday's game as a
guest of the Packers. Kramer is almost a dead ringer
for Harvey Kuenn, Detroit Tiger shortstop from
Milwaukee. Only Kramer is bigger, at 6 feet 3 inches
and 230 pounds...THAT INJURY JINX: Final Packer
injury report: Tom Bettis, linebacker, suffered a knee
injury in the first quarter and left the field for good soon
after. His right leg was put in a cast after the game
because of torn ligaments. He will have to wear the cast for at least a month. Fullback Paul Hornung kicked off twice and limped away, his ankle injury aggravated. Defensive back Bill Kinard, also out with a bum ankle, was pressed into service for two plays because John Symank was stunned when fell on his head defending a pass in the third quarter. When fullback Howie Ferguson was ejected for fighting, the Packers were left with 28 able-bodied men, including punting specialist Dick Deschaine. Fred Cone, Ferguson's replacement, suffered a leg injury. Frank Purnell replaced Cone...Ticket scalpers took a beating as it rained all morning Sunday and almost right up until game time. It also rained in the second half and after the game. The field was almost devoid of grass in the middle...TITTLE WAS VILLAIN: "I guess Tittle is the one who did it for them," Packer Coach Lisle Blackbourn said afterward. "But we helped. We didn't rush him hard enough and we never did hit him." Tittle entered the game in the second half with the Packers ahead, 20-10. He didn't start because of leg injuries. He suffered no aggravations. Frank Albert, San Francisco coach, said, "Tittle's the one who won for us. But that's the way it was in the first 11 games, too. Perry played a swell game, too." Blackbourn agreed to that...Blackbourn thought quarterback Bart Starr "looked real good". He said that Starr's blocking protection broke down too often, causing losses...Carlton Massey, playing linebacker for the first time, deflected the ball on both Packer interceptions. "I should have had one myself," he said....Three or four times, Packer blockers had a lane open for long yardage but halfback Don McIlhenny slipped or was tripped by the last man...Ferguson tried a pass and it might have clicked if Max McGee had turned to catch the ball after Dick Moegle tired to deflect it in the end zone.
DECEMBER 16 (Milwaukee Sentinel) - "Y.A Tittle won it for us," Coach Frankie Albert declared Sunday after his 49ers rallied to beat the Packers, 27-20. "There's just no substitute for experience," Albert said. "I told the team at halftime that Tittle would start the third quarter and it seemed to pick up the players. They were disgusted with themselves after the first half." With rookie quarterback John Brodie at the controls because Tittle had suffered pulled muscles in both legs, San Francisco trailed, 20-10, at the half. Two of Brodie's passes had been grabbed for costly interceptions and Joe Perry made two expensive fumbles. In the second half, Tittle held the helm and Perry roared like the "Joe the Jet" of old. Perry scored two touchdowns and wound up as the game's rushing leader with 130 yards. "That is the best clutch game I've
(SAN FRANCISCO) - Green Bay's depleted Packers gave it all they had here Sunday, but it wasn't quite enough. San Francisco's frantic 49ers, whipped forward on their gold rush by the second half play of limping
quarterback Y.A. Tittle, rallied and beat the Wisconsin pros, 27-20. So San Francisco shared the Western Division title with Detroit and will meet the Lions here next Sunday. The winner will play the Eastern Division
champion Cleveland Browns either here or at Detroit, on December 29 for the NFL crown. For awhile Sunday, it seemed that Lisle Blackbourn's battling Packers, crippled and out of contention, might upset all the dope.
The Packes, behind after one quarter, 10-0, led at the half, 20-10. They had Frankie Albert's prospectors up a mountain without a mule. Then Albert, the old left handed quarterback called on bald Yelberton Abraham Tittle, a 30 year old Texan by way of Louisiana State University, to take over from rookie John Brodie as San Francisco signal caller. When Tittle hobbled onto Kezar Stadium's muddy field the sellout crowd of 59,522 cheered wildly. Tittle could hardly run at all, but he could still pass. He shook his fist as he called for the first huddle and the 49ers became a different team.
The din, reminiscent of Baltimore Colt crowds, never let up and neither did the 49ers. They scored 10 points in the third quarter to tie the score and they punched over another touchdown early in the fourth quarter to win it. Whereas two of Brodie's passes were picked off by Packer defenders, Tittle usually either put the ball in his receiver's hands or "ate" the ball for a loss, rather than let Green Bay's talented secondary get it. And San Francisco's defense, lifted by new confidence instilled in the offense by Tittle, came up with three interceptions itself in the second half. Those finished the Packers. Tittle completed 10 out of 14 passes. That, combined with the running of rejuvenated Joe Perry, who carried 27 times for 130 yards, overcame another fine performance by Green Bay's young quarterback Bart Starr. Starr, second year man from Alabama, completed 15 out of 22 passes and Max McGee dropped another that was laid softly in his bread basket with no one around. The Packers, however, could not keep their running game going after a fast start. They had no "old pros" to match Tittle and Perry in the clutch. Joe Arenas scored San Francisco's first touchdown on a seven yard run off a fake field goal. This was a typical Frankie Albert move - "go for broke". It worked. Perry scored the two other touchdowns, on a nine year burst off tackle and a two yard dive over guard. Gordy Soltau, who faked the early field goal, made three pointers from 32 and 35 yards out and kicked the three extra points.
For Green Bay, which scored all of its points in the second quarter, Starr sneaked one yard for the first touchdown after setting it up with a 26 yard pass down the middle to Al Carmichael, and passed 11 yards to Joe Johnson for the second. Fred Cone kicked 18 and 37 yards field goals only 15 seconds apart and added the two extra points. Fumbles and interceptions played a part in almost every score. Green Bay moved from its 20 to San Francisco's 26 with the opening kickoff where Starr fumbled the snap from center and Marv Matuszak recovered for San Francisco. The 49ers smashed right back, 70 yards in 12 plays with Stanford's Brodie at the helm. Arenas, supposedly holding the ball for Soltau to kick on Green Bay's 15, ran around right end for the touchdown which made it 7-0 with 10 minutes elapsed.
Two plays later Howie Ferguson fumbled and Bill Stits recovered for San Francisco on Green Bay's 26. Three tries gained a yard, so Soltau kicked his 32 yard field goal. San Francisco led, 10-0, and with nothing at stake for last place Green Bay, it seemed a rout might well be on. The Packers had other ideas. They hurried 73 yards in six plays to their first touchdown, Starr sneaking over right guard on the second play of the second period. Here Green Bay got a break, for after an exchange of punts, the 49ers drove to Green Bay's five. Perry dropped the ball and Bill Forester of the Packers picked it up. The rangy linebacker ran and twirled 40 yards with the fumble to his 45. Dick Deschaine's 15 yard punt didn't help, but a play later Hank Gremminger intercepted Brodie's long pass and ran it back 45 yards behind a quickly formed blocked posse to San Francisco's 18. Not even an offside penalty could keep Green Bay from going in on Starr's pass to Johnson, who carried Dick Moegle with him the last three yards. The Packers led, 14-10.
Carlton Massey, pressed into service as linebacker with Tom Bettis injured in the first quarter, then deflected Brodie's pass to John Symank, who intercepted and returned 36 yards to San Francisco's 30. With time running out in the half, Starr worked the ball into position for Cone's 18 yard field goal. Only 20 seconds remained before intermission. After the kickoff, Perry fumbles and Jim Temp recovered. With five seconds left in the half, Cone kicked his 37 yard field goal. The 49ers were glad to get into the dressing room alive. Now came the quarter in which Green Bay could do no right this season. All told, in the third period of 12 league games, the Packers scored only seven points and gave up 84. This was that kind of third quarter.
First Tittle's passes moved the 49ers into position for Soltau's 35 yard field goal. Green Bay tried three plays and punted. San Francisco also had to punt. Then on the second Packers play from scrimmage, Starr threw an instant late to Bill Howton cutting across the middle. Val Joe Walker, a former Packer, timed the play perfectly intercepted on the 30 and returned 12 yards to Green Bay's 18. On the play, Ferguson got mad at a 49er, took seven or eight swings at him, cost the Packers a nine yard penalty (half the distance to their goal) and was thrown out of the game. Perry burst through to the tying score on the next play. Again the Packers failed to make even so much as a first down as McGee dropped the ball, and San Francisco took over after Deschaine's long punt and moved 69 yards in 13 plays to the winning touchdown. The drive started in the third period and wound up on the third play of the last quarter with Perry going up and over from two yards out.
Starr then guided Green Bay to San Francisco's 38 but was thrown for a loss to pass. Deschaine's punt rolled dead on San Francisco's one and Carmichael returned the subsequent kick 13 yards to the 49er 35. Babe Parilli was sent in to try his luck. He tried a long pass on first down. Howton slipped behind the defender but the pass was late and Moegle came across from the other side and intercepted in the end zone. The next time the Packers got the ball, Parilli underthrew and Karl Rubke intercepted. That set up a field goal try by Soltau from the 21 with 17 seconds to go but the kick sailed wide to the right. The game ended with Parilli, who threw two passes and had both intercepted, waiting too long to try to get off his desperation throw and being swarmed under on Green Bay's 15 yard line. The victory was San Francisco's eighth against four defeats. Green Bay suffered its ninth defeat against three victories for its worst season since 1953, the year before Blackbourn took over.
GREEN BAY -      0 20  0  0 - 20
SAN FRANCISCO - 10  0 10  7 - 27
1st - SF - Joe Arenas, 7-yard run (Gordie Soltau kick) SAN FRANCISCO 7-0
1st - SF - Soltau, 32-yard field goal SAN FRANCISCO 10-0
2nd - GB - Starr, 1-yard run (Cone kick) SAN FRANCISCO 10-7
2nd - GB - Johnson, 11-yard pass from Starr (Cone kick) GREEN BAY 14-10
2nd - GB - Cone, 18-yard field goal GREEN BAY 17-10
2nd - GB - Cone, 37-yard field goal GREEN BAY 20-10
3rd - SF - Soltau, 35-yard field goal GREEN BAY 20-13
3rd - SF - Joe Perry, 9-yard run (Soltau kick) TIED 20-20
4th - SF - Perry, 2-yard run (Soltau kick) SAN FRANCISCO 27-20
seen Perry play," Albert declared. "And Gene Babb went in there at fullback in the second half without having run all week because of a bad knee. He really went well." Joe Arenas, speaking of his own startling eight-yard touchdown run off a fake place kick formation, said: "We called the play in the huddle and I had the option of running or passing. My receiver was covered so I ran." Albert was happy over the luck of the playoff draw that has Detroit meeting San Francisco here next Sunday for the Western Division title. The winner will meet Cleveland December 29 for the NFL championship. Green Bay Coach Lisle Blackbourn said the Lions were better against his club than the 49ers were, but he wanted no part of any prediction. "Sure the 49ers are a good club," Blackbourn said. "But today they beat a bunch of cripples. Five guys from our starting team were out of the lineup because of injuries." Blackbourn said the Lions were better against his club than the 49ers were, but he wanted no part of any prediction. "Sure the 49ers are a good club," Blackbourn said. "But today they beat a bunch of cripples. Five guys from our starting team were out of the lineup because of injuries."
49ers team mascot Clementine the Mule appears unconcerned as the 49ers trail the Green Bay Packers 10-20 during the third quarter of the team’s 27-20 victory over the Packers at Kezar Stadium (Photo by Frank Rippon)
San Francisco 49ers (8-4) 27, Green Bay Packers (3-9) 20
Sunday December 15th 1957 (at San Francisco)