Green Bay Packers (4-10) 16, San Francisco 49ers (5-9) 14
Sunday December 18th 1977 (at Milwaukee)
(MILWAUKEE) -While his Green Bay teammates have seven months to savor a season ending victory, David Whitehurst preferred to recall an all but forgotten exhibition game last Aug. 13. "It was against New England, here at County Stadium, my first play in the preseason," Whitehurst said. "I had to call a time out because I was lost for words. I had made a dumb call and then I couldn't think of what to do. That's not happening to me anymore," he said, allowing the slightest smile of satisfaction. To say that Whitehurst's progress in just over four months could be measured in light years would be an exaggeration, but perhaps not inappropriate. The rookie quarterback, an eighth round draft choice from Furman, shredded San Francisco's secondary by completing 17 of 22 passes for 219 yards and a touchdown to lead the Packers to a 16-14 win over the 49ers. San Francisco's Jim Plunkett passed for 202 yards himself, but threw three interceptions. CB Willie Buchanon returned one 29 yards for a touchdown and set up a field goal with another. Whitehurst, who became a starter five games ago after regular quarterback Lynn Dickey broke a leg, continually burned the 49ers with screen passes. Packer running backs Barty Smith, Eric Torkelson and Terdell Middleton combined for 10 recptions for 135 yards. The 49ers' feared defensive line of Tommy Hart, Cleveland Elam, Jimmy Webb and Cedrick Hardman didn't sack Whitehurst once and seldom was able to pressure him against the Packers' lightly regarded offensive line. Buchanon intercepted his first pass on the game's third scrimmage play and returned 12 yards to the 49er 33. Whitehurst threw incomplete on third down at the nine five plays later but Chester Marcol kicked a 27 yard field goal. The 49ers responded with a 75 yard, 16 play drive which consumed eight minutes. Plunkett completed five of seven passes along the way. However, Whitehurst came back to take the Packers 65 yards in six plays, completing passes of 21 yards to Barty Smith, 27 to Middleton and seven to McGeorge. Green Bay ended the season 4-10, one game worse than their 1976 mark, and left Bart Starr with a 13-29 record.
SAN FRANCISCO -  7  7  0  0 - 14
GREEN BAY     -  9  7  0  0 - 16
                   SAN FRANCISCO     GREEN BAY
First downs                   20            19
Rush-yards-TDs          34-117-1      32-103-0
Comp-Att-Yd-TD-INT 17-29-202-1-3 17-22-219-1-0
Sacked-yards                 2-7           0-0
Net pass yards               195           219
Total yards                  312           322
Fumbles-lost                 1-0           2-0
Turnovers                      3             0
Penalties-yards             5-30         11-85
SCORING
1st - GB - Marcol, 27-yard field goal GREEN BAY 3-0
1st - SF - Gene Washington, 9-yd pass from Jim Plunkett (Ray Wersching kick) SAN FRANCISCO 7-3
1st - GB - McGeorge, 9-yard pass from Whitehurst (Marcol kick) GREEN BAY 9-7
2nd - GB - Buchanon, 29-yard interception return (Marcol kick) GREEN BAY 16-7
2nd - SF - Wilbur Jackson, 29-yard run (Wersching kick) GREEN BAY 16-14
RUSHING
GREEN BAY - Eric Torkelson 10-35, Barty Smith 10-33, Jim Culbreath 5-18, Terdell Middleton 3-8, Willard Harrell 3-7, David Whitehurst 1-2
SAN FRANCISCO - Wilbur Jackson 8-52 1 TD, Delvin Williams 21-46, Bob Ferrell 3-10, Paul Hofer 1-7, Jim Plunkett 1-2
PASSING
GREEN BAY - David Whitehurst 22-17-219 1 TD
SAN FRANCISCO - Jim Plunkett 29-17-202 1 TD 3 INT
RECEIVING
GREEN BAY - Barty Smith 5-63, Eric Torkelson 4-45, Rich McGeorge 3-31 1 TD, Steve Odom 2-40, Ollie Smith 2-13, Terdell Middleton 1-27
SAN FRANCISCO - Gene Washington 6-97 1 TD, Wilbur Jackson 5-35, Paul Seal 3-42, Delvin Williams 3-28