Nov 28, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Emmanual Sanders (88) celebrates his touchdown catch against the Baltimore Ravens during a NFL football game on Thanksgiving.

Pittsburgh Steelers, new Thanksgiving eve mainstay - sports debate Part two


Thanksgiving eve needs a new NFL mainstay, but should it be the Steelers? Dan Salem and Todd Salem tackle this sports debate head on in part two of their NFL Thanksgiving conversation. Two brothers from New York yell, scream and debate sports.

[Part one - Even Cowboys fun on Thanksgiving]



How do you feel about the Thanksgiving setup? Do the Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions deserve this permanent deal? I don’t even know the history of why they get to play every Thanksgiving day. Or is it a detriment to them; would they rather have a rotation with everybody else?

The effect is certainly subdued with the fact that there is now a Thursday game every week of the season. This sort of dampens the specialty of Thanksgiving games anyways. But the holiday games still mean more because of everything we touched on. So why do the Cowboys and Lions get that pub every year? And if the league was so set on keeping that going, why not pick a third team to give the third game to? All of it seems rather arbitrary.



It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without Dallas and Detroit playing football. Don’t you dare take that away from me! Its pretty easy to argue that the Cowboys deserve this honor, but the Lions? At this point deserving the honor doesn’t matter to me. They play on Thanksgiving. No discussion. I’m sure some players would rather have a rotation going, but like you mentioned, nearly every team plays at least one Thursday game in today’s NFL. So keep Dallas and Detroit on turkey day and I won’t start a petition.

I’m completely on board with making another team a mainstay of the day and I’ll offer up two viable candidates. Since both Dallas and Detroit are NFC teams, its only fair to extend this honor to an AFC squad. The first is an obvious choice and played this year on Thanksgiving. The Pittsburgh Steelers are NFL royalty and practically America’s team, if Dallas didn’t hold the dubious honor. As much as I despise the Steelers, they would make for great turkey day tradition. The other team I’d pick is the New England Patriots. There name says America in it and they have become as much a symbol of the NFL as any franchise over the last ten years. Steelers first, then Patriots.

I know the league wants a rotation going for the night cap game, but with Thursday games throughout the season they should just suck it up and pick one other Thanksgiving staple. As for the Thursday games hurting Thanksgiving, that’s crazy talk! It changes nothing. I believe I explained why Thanksgiving is the greatest sports day of the year and nothing can take that honor away. I will say this, I actually LOVE Thursday night football. I haven’t been able to watch the games, but I can’t on Mondays either. Its pretty awesome though, to follow along on my phone and track the game and stats when it’s just one game. It makes me care about teams I’d otherwise ignore, simply because it’s the only game being played.

Nothing can beat the Direct TV NFL game mix on a Sunday afternoon, except for the Red Zone channel, but singling out a game for Monday and now Thursday works great in my book. I don’t think its possible from a scheduling stand point, and I know teams need days to rest, but I’d enjoy one game on Wednesday, one on Thursday, one on Friday and then a full slate Sunday with the Sunday nighter and Monday’s game. Put the NFL on as many nights of the week as possible. Sure, sure the players’ health will suffer. And maybe we’ve had so many injuries this season because of all the Thursday night games, but from an excitement standpoint this would be awesome!



Don’t you feel like the Thanksgiving late game could be an opportunity to shine a spotlight on a fledgling franchise and boost it up? The Pittsburgh Steelers and New England Patriots are old hat. Why not put the San Diego Chargers in that spot? They had been a solid team for years that was never getting the attendance numbers they should have. They have also been pretty exciting here recently, with high-powered offenses and sieve-like defenses, making for high-scoring affairs. Also, playing on the west coast allows the games to be televised later without effecting the players too much. I have to imagine 9 pm ET start times are brutal for games on the east coast. I realize this still happens with Sunday and Monday Night Football, but that doesn’t mean it has to continue on Thanksgiving as well.Or what about flexing the Thanksgiving games? Not sure if this is even logistically feasible, but how about rewarding the best teams with the Thanksgiving late game? The New Orleans Saints play at the Seattle Seahawks this week. Flex that into the most prime spot of the entire week to reward the teams and the ownership groups with big ratings. The Denver Broncos also play the Kansas City Chiefs this week. Either of those games should be flexed into that Thanksgiving day open slot. But since I’m aware of the scheduling hiccups that would result in my simple idea, yours is ludicrous. NFL football on Wednesday through Monday? Get outta here! Injuries would skyrocket past 50%. Start naming your favorite players and half of them would be on IR every week. But we sure as hell know the NFL doesn’t care about player safety when it affects their bottom line. Sixteen game schedule too long? Let’s talk about extending it to eighteen games! Playoffs too brutal? Let’s expand them! Not enough bye weeks and too much travel? Let’s make teams play short weeks and travel to foreign countries!…hmm. Maybe you’re on to something here. The NFL clearly doesn’t care about player safety in anything other than on-field hits. Wednesday Night Football you say?

[If you missed Part one - Even Dallas Cowboys fun on Thanksgiving]


Tags: New England Patriots Pittsburgh Steelers San Diego Chargers

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