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Random Stats: Thanksgiving 2017 edition

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A look back at the Lions’ history on Thanksgiving.

Chicago Bears v Detroit Lions Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Man, I love this time of year. There is just something in the air. The Lions at home on Thanksgiving is a Detroit institution. As is me eating turkey until I literally pass out, arguing about politics with the parents and sneaking an early slice of pumpkin pie. This week is all about fun, family and tradition.

So with that in mind, we’re doing things a little different in this week’s Random Stats. This time it’s all about you guys, the readers. I’m going to just give you a paragraph about the Lions’ history on Thanksgiving, then I’m going to see how many questions I can answer. Let’s do this.

The Lions played on thanksgiving for the first time in 1917. They’re 37-38-2 all time on turkey day. This is only the fourth time the Lions have played the Vikings on Thanksgiving. They’re 2-2 against the purple team from the state with the big mall.

To the social media stuff!!!!

Let’s see here. I wonder who it could be. It’s a man that has tremendous skills on the piano, but not so much on the football field. If you guessed Clyde Leforce, you’re wrong. It’s Joey Harrington.

On Thanksgiving 2002, the Lions welcomed the defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots in to town. And Joey proceeded to out play Tom Brady in a bad way. Harrington went 22-44 for 210 yards and three interceptions. He finished the day with a 35.2 passer rating. That’s pretty dang bad. The Patriots won 20-12, then won a bunch of Super Bowls.

The Lions have played divisional opponents on Thanksgiving 41 times. They’re 23-18 in those games. So that’s a good thing. That leaves them at 14-20-2 in non-divisional Thanksgiving Day games.

Also, cranberry sauce is not good. Not sure why anyone ever has it for Thanksgiving dinner.

I took this one personally. I felt like Matt was saying that I wouldn’t spend an hour doing this. In your face, Matt. I have the answer. This has actually happened one time. At one point in 2000, the Lions were 6-4 and the Vikings were 8-2. The Lions finished the year at 9-7 and the Vikings finished at 11-5 and won the division.

Perhaps more interesting was what happened in 1997. The Vikings were 8-2 and running through the NFL, but in Week 12, they lost to the 4-6 Detroit Lions. Minnesota would end up losing five straight and finish 9-7. Both they and the Lions snuck into the playoffs that year as a wild card.

Lastly, the third and final time that the Vikings started at 8-2, the Lions were 6-3-1 way back in 1971. The Lions finished the season at 7-6-1 and the Vikings went 11-3.

I was 100 percent sure this was going to turn out ugly, but then it didn’t. The Lions are 11-11-2 against divisional opponents who come into Thanksgiving with a winning record.

Also, I like turkey gravy the most. I think it’s delicious.

The Lions have won the CBS Turkey Leg once, The All-Iron Award four times, The Fox Turkey Leg four times and the Galloping Gobbler three times. Matthew Stafford is the only Lion to win two of these awards.

Alright, it’s Thanksgiving, people. Let’s get some Thanksgiving questions.

Well, my Atlanta Falconian friend, pumpkin pie is the by far the most Thanksgivingest dessert in the world. It’s so great on thanksgiving that I was able to make up the word Thanksgivingest. You’re all welcome for this.

Perhaps what Pride of Detroit is missing is a cooking show. I’ll host. Jeremy can host his daily needlepoint with POD web series. Speaking of Jeremy....

Excuse me, sir. I believe this is a shot directly across my bow. I’ll have you know that there are some countries that the punishment for not eating mozzarella sticks is death. I hear they do this in Liechtenstein.

It really does. This is all because you’re happy. And when you’re happy, your body releases oxytocin and endorphins and such. According to this study and this study*, those hormones can cause you to be hungrier, which makes you eat more delicious Thanksgiving food. Considering how delicious Thanksgiving food is, more of it means more happiness. Or something like that.

*Mike has no idea what he’s talking about. Those “studies’ he mentioned, are just Yahoo answers from random people. Mike is not a scientist, despite his many claims that he is.

That’s going to do it for today’s Random Stats. It’s been real. I want to wish everyone and their families a Happy Thanksgiving. I hope all of you have an awesome time, and I’ll see you guys after the game for “What Just Happened?”