December 3, 2021 | SPORTS | Quinn Guevara | Photo by Anil Jergens

Thanksgiving is a time for a variety of things: friends, family, being thankful, and good food. The list goes on. The tradition of Thanksgiving is unlike any other holiday that Americans celebrate. People share what they are thankful for at the dinner table with a cornucopia of food to fill the bellies of everyone there. But one tradition on Thanksgiving may be the best of them all: Thanksgiving Football. 

Thanksgiving Football is one of the most highly anticipated events of the fall. Originally, Thanksgiving Football was dominated by high school and college; games would be played on Thursday instead of Friday and Saturday. 

The NFL took over the tradition thanks to an unlikely NFL team: the Detroit Lions. In their inaugural season in 1934, in an attempt to raise some attraction for the new team, owner George Richards took the risk of hosting a Thanksgiving Day football game. 

The game was sold out weeks in advance. Even though the Lions lost to the defending world champion Chicago Bears, it became a tradition for years to follow. 

Almost 90 years later, the tradition is bigger than ever. After many families play their own Thanksgiving Football game in their backyard (my family included), they go inside and watch three back-to-back-to-back nationally televised NFL games. 

The first game on the table was the least anticipated game: the Detroit Lions against the Chicago Bears. The Lions went into the game winless, boasting a record of 0-9-1. The goose egg stayed after the game. A late game field goal by the Bears gave them the lead; they won 16-14. The game after was the Las Vegas Raiders against the Dallas Cowboys. 

The Dallas Cowboys are the second team after the Lions to join the craze of Thanksgiving Football. They also play every year. After a COVID outbreak on the team took out some players, including star wide receivers Amari Cooper and Ceedee Lamb, the team stayed in a shootout with the Raiders. 

The Raiders, who have been dealing with distraction after distraction, were able to come up with a stop in overtime and march down the field for a game winning field goal. They won the game 36-33. 

The last game of the day, the Buffalo Bills against the New Orleans Saints, which most were hoping to be a great match, was a blowout. Josh Allen proved, after an embarrassing game the week before, that he is one of the league’s young great stars. He had four total touchdowns, including two to tight end Dawson Knox. The Bills won the game 31-6. 

After a long day of spending time with family and hours upon hours working in the kitchen preparing all the food, it’s always nice to expect and be hopeful for Thanksgiving Football.   

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