The League

Brandon Benson
Packers Blogger

Brandon Benson

Brandon Benson is the lead blogger at Acme Packing Company.

Keep the tradition, dump the blowouts

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My childhood memories of Thanksgiving are fond ones. I stayed home from school and spent time with extended family members. But the best part was watching football and eating as much turkey and stuffing as I wanted. Back in those pre-cable/satellite TV days of my childhood, watching a game instead of the usual talk shows and soap operas that ruled daytime TV was a big deal.

But now I'm an NFL blogger and concerned that my beloved Packers, coming off a difficult win last Sunday, in which they lost two Pro Bowl defensive players to season ending knee injuries, only have three days to prepare. The only comfort I can take in their difficulties is that their opponents, the Lions, are working under the same pressures. Plus these difficulties affect two other teams, the Cowboys and Giants, who may be fighting the Packers for a Wild Card playoff spot. Still, it's tough for any team to come back on a short week when it's so late in the season.
But the reality is that Thursday football isn't going anywhere. With Thursday night games now on NFL Network, teams every year are frequently going to be put under the pressure of a short week. If that's the case, then there is no reason to take away the traditional Thanksgiving games from the fans in Detroit and Dallas.

But does that annual game in Detroit and Dallas give an unfair advantage to the home team on the short week? Is there really a home field advantage anymore? Home field advantage throughout the playoffs didn't help the Titans or Giants advance to the Super Bowl last season. If you looked at the home teams' records in Thanksgiving games, you'd probably find the home team is less likely to win in recent years due to the lousy performances by the Lions. They haven't won on Thanksgiving since 2003, when they upset the eventual NFC North division champion Packers. The game in Detroit last season was an unentertaining affair as the Lions were crushed by the Titans 47-10. The last interesting game played in Detroit was back in 2005, when the Lions appeared to give up in a loss to the Falcons which led to the firing of head coach Steve Mariucci a couple days later.

It isn't time to update the annual Thanksgiving games, but maybe it's time to reevaluate the matchups provided by the schedule makers. The Packers are a 10 to 11 point favor over the Lions, but wouldn't it have been great to have watched the Browns/Lions matchup from last Sunday? The Cowboys are favored by 13 to 14 points over the Raiders, but the Redskins/Cowboys game last week was a real battle. Trying to predict which games are going to be good, even in the era of flexible scheduling, is certainly an inexact science. But when I'm breaking the wishbone on Thursday, I'll be wishing for some games next year that won't end in a blowout by halftime.

By Brandon Benson  |  November 25, 2009; 8:36 AM ET  | Category:  Dallas Cowboys , Detriot Lions , Green Bay Packers , NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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Comments

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I am really quite sick of seeing both the Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys on Thanksgiving day. It is time for a change, please let's move on to other teams.

Posted by: James19 | November 25, 2009 11:21 AM


If you are going to have classic Packers blogger's writeup having credibility, then you should have contacted jclombardi at lombardiave.com for a respectable commentary about legitimate
issues in the NFL and the Packers.

http://lombardiave.com/

Posted by: jcrwriter137 | November 26, 2009 11:40 AM

You look like you just swallowed a football, so does that mean your opinion matters, NO!! LEAVE FOOTBALL DECISIONS TO THOSE WHO KNOW WHAT THERE DOING!!! RESERVE YOUR OPINIONS TO MORE INTELLIGENT THINGS LIKE.. HOW TO DIGEST THAT FOOTBALL YOU JUST SWALLOWED!!! Ha!!!Ha!!!!

Posted by: jmb137405 | November 26, 2009 3:15 PM

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