What are your most memorable Thanksgiving football moments?

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Wednesday’s PFT PM featured a daily PFT Live tradition: A draft.

This draft featured a look at our favorite Thanksgiving NFL moments of all time. Charean Williams and I rattled off three each from nearly 50 years of watching Thanksgiving football.

Proving once again that, yes, we are old.

It was a fun trip down memory lane. In the comments, share your own favorite Thanksgiving memories, football related or otherwise.

Above all else, it’s a day to slow down and reflect. Even if a year that has been so chaotic and unpredictable, there are reasons to be thankful. And there are reasons to be optimistic.

We appreciate your decision to spend some of your valuable time with us on a regular basis, or whenever you stop by. Enjoy the day and above all else, stay safe.

49 responses to “What are your most memorable Thanksgiving football moments?

  1. 1979 – Oilers and Earl Campbell beating the Cowboys and Dorsett. Epic game from Campbell. Oilers won

  2. When I was a youngster I went to the first Thanksgiving night game, Broncos vs Chiefs. I was walking around with my brother showing him the neat parts inside Arrowhead stadium when I commented on a guys hat telling him that I liked it. Turned out that guy was Larry Johnson’s brother and he gave us 50 yard line tickets on like the fifth row in the family section. Chiefs kicked butt, Larry Johnson ran wild & John Fogerty rocked the halftime show!

  3. The classic games in the 70s between the Cowboys and Vikings. Seemed like they played every year, though I know they didn’t. Chuck Foreman, Drew Pearson, Too Tall Jones, and a big piece of pumpkin pie.

  4. The Packers have played a whopping 36 times on Thanksgiving.

    The first game that comes to mind is the 1986 Thanksgiving game. It was kind of a back and forth game, but the Pack came back twice from being down 10 points. The Pack ended up winning 44-40 on a game winning punt return by PR/WR Walter Stanley. The great Randy Wright(Badger and Packer) was the QB of that era. Wright threw 3 TD’s that Thanksgiving and 2 were to Stanley.

    Happy Thanksgiving!🦃

    Enjoy the Turkey and a close few loved ones and Football! I know I will.✌👋

  5. I was at that game. I think I had about 100 beers that day.

    mike624 says:
    Eagles spanking the Cardinals

  6. 1980: Vince Evans ties the game at the end of regulation, then Dave Williams returns the opening kickoff in OT for a Bears win.

  7. Leon Lett touching the missed field goal giving the Dolphins another chance for the field goal and the win.

  8. Man I was really young but I think the Lions were playing the Bears and just as the game went into overtime my Mom yelled “dinners on” and we all had to go eat. All I remember is as soon as we said the prayer I shoved some turkey into my dome and said I had to go to the bathroom and went to the tv and the game was over. I think some guy #22 went coast to coast for the Bears. I was bummed I missed it live. Football and food for Thanksgiving. Can’t beat it. I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving with the ones whom you Love and Love you to.

  9. Clearly the Dolphins / Cowboys game. 1993. Leon Lett the real goat.
    In fact I am still owed money from a bet I made on that game.
    Could never find the dude. Long story but I was cheated!

  10. theimmaculatedeception says:

    1979 – Oilers and Earl Campbell beating the Cowboys and Dorsett. Epic game from Campbell. Oilers won


    If you ever saw Earl Campbell run in those first few years……my oh my!!! Great memory!

  11. My favorite moments are the same each year….
    Listening to everyone complain about having to watch the Lions play every Thanksgiving.

  12. Steelers v Lions, 1998 coin toss fiasco. Bettis call “Tails,” ref flips the coin, comes up tails, ref says “Lions win the toss.” Lions kick a field goal, win the game. Back then, OT was sudden death, first team to score wins.

  13. As a Seahawks fan, my least memorable memory was driving to Texas Stadium in 2008 and watching them get the crap kicked out of them by the Cowboys (Seahawks were 4-12 that year). Bright spot from that was I believe it was Walter Jones’s last game…so at least I was able to see him play.

    Most memorable was Richard Sherman chomping down on the Turkey Leg on the 49er’s 50 yard line in 2014…good times.

    Happy Thanksgiving you beautiful people!

  14. Watching and listening to the Raven fans cry about Tomlin faking out the kick returner. They are still whining…..

  15. The announce saying “world’s fastest human” got my attention. Bob Hayes, first game I ever remember watching.

  16. Making the road trip to Dallas in 2001 to watch the Broncos beat the Cowboys behind a mediocre effort from Brian Griese and some solid RB play from Mike Anderson. Creed was the halftime performance and I had Whataburger for Thanksgiving dinner. Good memories, for sure!

  17. Switching gears here, but 1971. Number 1 Nebraska v. Number 2 Oklahoma. I had no dog in the fight but just a hell of a game! NU won late on a punt return by Johnny Rodgers. The game was billed as The Game of the Century. Maybe it was.

  18. The worst one would have to be broadcasting the hapless lions play the hapless texans.


    Games get rescheduled all the time. How about schedule the thanksgiving games after week 4-6 and find 3 decent matchups.

  19. The year that John Madden introduced the “TurDucken”. A strange combination of turkey, duck, & chicken.

  20. Every time I saw the look at a players face when they bite into one of Madden’s cold & overcooked turkey legs

  21. Was the Lions Steelers game where Bill Cower Shoved the photo of 11 men in the refs pocket at halftime a Thanksgiving game? The ref penalized the Steelers for 12 men on the field when there were only 11.

  22. “springfield says:

    The worst one would have to be broadcasting the hapless lions play the hapless texans.
    Games get rescheduled all the time. How about schedule the thanksgiving games after week 4-6 and find 3 decent matchups.”

    I was thinking about this yesterday. Cowboys haven’t done much in 25 years, the Lions are approaching 30 years without a playoff win. Other than “tradition”, why are we stuck with watching two inept teams on one of the premier football days of the calendar?

    I’m a Lions fan, and we do not deserve the spotlight each year. Neither does Dallas. May be time to start rotating the Turkey Bowls.

  23. 1987 Darrin Nelson runs for a TD and Vikings win 44-38. RIP Wade Wilson. Then 1998 Moss torches the cowboys who passed up on him. Skol and Happy thanksgiving everyone.

  24. Thanksgiving evening 2006, Chiefs 19, Broncos 10. John Fogerty played at halftime, his second gig of the day after playing in Detroit earlier. Good show, good game.

  25. Watching the Vikings with a young Randy Moss torch the Cowboys twice in three years. And watching the Vikings play the Lions years later when the refs interfered in the game, even though the right team eventually won (even Florio himself wrote a story afterwards questioning how the game went that is still accessible on this site). I really reduced how much I watched Thanksgiving football, or any NFL games, after that game. I watched the Cowboys-Washington game today mainly because I knew both teams are so bad that it might be fun to watch and it really was. The NFC East this year is literally the worst division of teams in the history of any of the major sports, it is actually kind of fun to watch them play each other.

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