It’s a short week around here for both you and the Detroit Lions. Just a couple days separate you and yours from getting together to celebrate your gratitude for one another and the Detroit Lions from playing their annual Thanksgiving Day game.
Without much to look forward for this year’s offering of Lions-Bears on Thursday, it’s a great time to look back on years past and the moments that enriched our afternoons rather than look ahead to Mitchell Trubisky looking like a competent NFL quarterback while the Lions possibly send out **checks notes** David Blough under center with Matthew Stafford’s back broken and Jeff Driskel’s hammy out of sorts.
Let’s just get into today’s Question of the Day...
What’s your favorite Thanksgiving moment with the Lions?
For three years in a row, Walt took me to a Lions game on Thanksgiving Day, and all of them had some quite memorable moments.
In 2003, our first trip down to the city for some grateful football, Dre Bly picked off Brett Favre twice, and Jason Hanson’s five field goals helped propel Detroit to a 22-14 win. Thus, a new tradition began and there was no way the Lions would lose again on Thanksgiving because they were 1-0 with myself in attendance.
In 2004, Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts came to town. If you don’t remember this thrashing, 2004 was the season where Manning bested Dan Marino’s single-season record for touchdown passes. Manning’s visit to Motown on that Thursday certainly helped him reach that mark, as he threw for six touchdowns and 236 yards on just 28 pass attempts. Detroit lost 41-9, and so went the cloak of invincibility I had draped over this organization.
In what would be our last visit to Ford Field for Thanksgiving, the Lions had a meeting with the Atlanta Falcons in 2005. 14-year-old me couldn’t have been any more jazzed to see Michael Vick, but I refrained from wearing my red No. 7 jersey into Ford Field. Speaking of quarterbacks, the Lions played three quarterbacks that afternoon: Jeff Garcia, Joey Harrington, and Dan Orlovsky. As you can probably guess, Detroit dropped this one, 27-7.
But what was perhaps my favorite Thanksgiving moment with this football team came a few seasons ago in 2016, when the Lions knocked off the Vikings in an uber-important matchup. Darius Slay came up huge in the final moments, intercepting Sam Bradford and setting up a Matt Prater field goal to give the Lions the victory and a place all alone atop the NFC North.