Turkey Day is upon us and football is going to be a major part of many family celebrations. Thanksgiving has three matchups that should be interesting to watch. All three games will be must watch television on Thanksgiving Day
The most intriguing game of Thanksgiving Day will be the game between the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers. Watching Frank Gore rush against the defensive line of the Ravens will be a battle I will be excited to see. In addition, we get a chance to see if Alex Smith can truly handle the secondary of Ed Reed and company. On the other side of the field, Ray Rice will do his best to dominate the 49ers defense. Rice is a force to be reckoned with running or catching passes out of the backfield. The X factor in this game will be the play of Joe Flacco. Through the first part of the season, Flacco has had games where he looked brilliant and then other weeks we are begging for him to take a seat on the bench. From week to week we never know which Joe Flacco we are going to see.
The thing that makes this game extra interesting is that the coaches of both the San Francisco 49ers and Baltimore Ravens are in fact family. Jim Harbaugh and John Harbaugh are brothers and grew up together. Jim Harbaugh coaches the San Francisco 49ers. John Harbaugh coaches the Baltimore Ravens. The Harbaugh brothers actually shared a room for 18 years of their lives. To say that the two opposing coaches know each other well would be a huge understatement. We have a rare opportunity in the NFL to see two brothers compete head to head against one another. Moreover, the scenario is even rarer since both brothers are not only head coaches but head coaches of potentially good playoff contending teams. This family feud game should be at the top of the list of any football fan’s schedule.
The second game which will be better than watching an Air Force Thunderbirds air show is the Green Bay Packers versus the Detroit Lions. Matthew Stafford to Calvin Johnson is one of the best quarterback-receiver duos in football. The Detroit Lions should put up some points early and often as they come out of the gate throwing. Kevin Smith will once again be starting at running back but the Packers present a much stronger run defense than the Panthers did the previous week. Do not expect a repeat of the rushing and recieving numbers Kevin Smith was able to put up last week. I used to think the, “Bad Boys of Detroit”, only existed on the NBA Basketball court. I was sadly mistaken as the Detroit Lions have gone from a laughing stock of an NFL Football team to a team that plays, “Hit the opponent in the mouth” style of football. Ndamukong Suh leads the Detroit defense into battle and the Lions have a fierce pass rush. The Detroit Lions Defense is truly scary at times on the field as they can dominate an offensive line at will.
However, for all that Detroit can do on the defensive side of the ball; the Green Bay Packers can do the same on the offensive side of the ball. The Green Bay Packers are packed with talent at just about every positon. However, the most impressive player on the Green Bay Packers roster is Aaron Rodgers. Aaron Rodgers is a like a painter creating a masterpiece when he is orchestrating the offense. Rodgers spreads the ball around to whichever of the many Green Bay Packers weapons are open. Rodgers can throw from the pocket or on the run, can scramble, and make every deep throw possible. No quarterback is playing better than Aaron Rodgers is right now. As long as Aaron Rodgers continues his streak of playing at the high level he has been playing each week, the Packers win.
The game that I am least excited about is the Dallas Cowboys playing against the hapless Miami Dolphins. I believe this will be similar to a high school or college home coming game. In college or high school, a team schedules an opposing team on their schedule they know they can beat. Dallas should have no problem putting a smack down on the Miami Dolphins who barely have any semblance of a real NFL offense. Reggie Bush running the ball and Matt Moore throwing the ball is far from a consistent winning formula.
Tony Romo has been playing stellar football the last three weeks. The only criticism anyone can make of Romo at this point is, “Where was this Tony Romo in the beginning of the season?” The Dallas Cowboys now have a real running back in Demarco Murray. Murray is a much improved option as an every down back over Felix Jones. Felix Jones is clearly better suited to a change of pace kind of role in the Dallas cowboys offense. With Felix Jones and Demarco Murray complimenting each other Dallas will finally have the ground game, fans have come to know and love. I am expecting a blowout by Dallas in this game. The game should be over by Halftime and will allow football fans to get a nap before the evening game.
Thanksgiving is definitely a dream day for any football fan. We have good food and great football games all day. Christmas is definitely coming a little bit early this year as today should have some memorable games that we can talk about for the next few weeks. Everyone enjoy the day. Eat well, drink your favorite drink and be merry all day long. Have a great Thursday and Happy Thanksgiving to one and all.