Fowl Play on Turkey Day in Detriot
Thanksgiving Day football games, which date back to the year 1876, have been the perfect way for fans to settle down after gobbling their turkey for 136 years. More specifically, during Thanksgiving 2012, the Detroit Lions played their 72nd Turkey Day game in franchise history. Despite the Lions’ 33-36-2 record in that time, this Thanksgiving tradition carries on.
Unfortunately for the Lions, history repeated itself as they lost for the ninth year in a row (34-31), and now in 11 of their last 12 Thanksgiving Day match-ups. Losing on Thanksgiving should not come as a surprise to the Lions, as they have a 44% winning percentage throughout their team’s history, but only a 32% winning percentage for Thanksgiving games.
The Lions and the 9-1 Houston Texans battled it out, but the Houston natives would wind up pulling out the victory in overtime. The thrilling contest was a nail-biter, as kickers from both teams could have ended the game if they split the uprights. But it couldn’t end that easily on Thanksgiving, as they both missed their first attempts until Houston’s Shane Graham squeezed one in near the right uprights to end it with 2:11 left to go in the overtime period.
Like a turkey before Thanksgiving, the Lions can be credited for putting up a fight. If it weren’t for a fluke play, the Lions actually would have won. Texans RB Justin Forsett rushed out of the backfield and was apparently tackled after gaining 7 yards, but the officials blew the call and neglected to rule him down, thus letting him run the remaining 74 yards into the end zone. The new NFL rule change states that all scoring plays are reviewed in the booth, but Lions coach Jim Schwartz threw the challenge flag, neglecting the automatic review. Instead, he received an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and therefore made the play unreviewable. This cost his team seven points, and in the end, cost them the game.
Detroit Lions vs. Houston Texans Analysis
Now, lets talk about the 2012 Lions. Their season is going downhill, fast. They are last in undoubtedly the toughest division in football, which includes the Bears, Packers, and Vikings. They are mediocre in points scored per game, and they are 22nd in the league in rushing yards. They are ranked 25th in the league in points against, and 23rd in the league in rush yards against. Their future looks a little brighter after this gutty showing on Thanksgiving, giving the tough Texans a run for their money, but three of their remaining five games are against the Falcons, Packers, and Bears.