For football fans, the annual Thanksgiving Day NFL games are as important a holiday tradition as turkey and mashed potatoes. If you’ve never attended an NFL game on Thanksgiving, you’re missing out. The atmosphere is festive and energetic, and the experience is unforgettable. You can get tickets to one of the games this year with the NFL Thanksgiving Day Games Tickets and Guide. Tickets start at $60.
Thanksgiving Day NFL games have been an annual event since the league was formed in 1920. Since the end of World War II in 1945, the Detroit Lions have hosted a Thanksgiving Day game every year. From 1951 through 1963, the Lions and Packers squared off annually. Starting in 1966, the Dallas Cowboys have also hosted a game. In 2006, a third Thanksgiving Day game was added between two non-fixed opponents.
Thanksgiving Day games are played throughout the day, with one game typically beginning in the morning, followed by an afternoon game and an evening contest. Each game is usually accompanied by an enhanced halftime show similar to that of the Super Bowl where world-renowned performers headline the act. The games are broadcast nationally by CBS, Fox and NBC.
In the 2016 season, the Detroit Lions will host division rival Minnesota Vikings; Dallas will entertain the Washington Redskins; and in the third game, AFC rivals Indianapolis and Pittsburgh will square off.
The Lions own a 36-38-2 record in Thanksgiving Day games. Last year, the Lions crushed Philadelphia 45-14. The Lions have won three straight Thanksgiving Day games. Meanwhile, Dallas is 29-18-1 on Thanksgiving. Last season Dallas fell to eventually NFC champion Carolina 33-14, as star Cowboy quarterback Tony Romo suffered an injury.
Indianapolis is 2-0-1 on the holiday, and Pittsburgh is just 1-6.