Happy Thanksgiving to everyone, and obviously we’ve got football this afternoon as the Patriots are set to take on the Detriot Lions at 12:30pm on CBS. This is only the fourth Thanksgiving day game for New England, with the last one being back in 2002 when they beat the Lions 20-12. Today could potentially be a tough game, as the Lions have played their opponents close, losing five games by just five points or less.
The Detroit Free Press believes that the Lions could redefine their season with a win over the Patriots today, and could be just the win they need to start moving back in the right direction.
Dave Birkett of the Free Press appears to be a bit less optimistic, and has his “Hot Topics” for today’s game. He points out that the Lions have lost six straight turkey-day games by an average of 23.2 points, and eight of nine since 2001.
The Detroit News has a preview to this afternoon’s game, and they list Lions safety Louis Delmas as the player to watch in this one against New England’s passing attack.
Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com has “10 Things To Watch” in today’s game, one of which includes some unconvential plays by the Lions, which will likely be tried to give them a spark – much in the same way Cleveland did a few weeks ago.
Reiss also points out that New England will be without their top interior rushers this afternoon, with Mike Wright among those who were downgraded to “out” yesterday.
Ian Rapoport of the Boston Herald has “Five Questions Facing the team” for today, with an obvious one being “avoiding the dreaded letdown”. It’s a worthwhile concern, as the Lions will likely pull out all the stops to make a solid showing in front of their home crowd – and a national television audience.
Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald writes that the Patriots “can’t take a pass on the Lions’ today, and points out that Detroit currently has the sixth-ranked passing offense in the NFL, averaging 255.9 yards per game.
Guregian also has an article on New England’s two-man running attack, which has been successful with BenJarvus Green-Ellis and Danny Woodhead so far this season.
Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe has a column this morning about the Lions, and writes that as bad as they’ve been, each year they’re “inadvertant guests” in our living rooms – and that usually means that this holiday is upon us.
Shalise Manza Young of the Globe also has an article on the Lions being part of Thanksgiving, which was born 71-years ago and she talks about the history of this tradition.
Monique Walker of the Boston Globe has an article on Tom Brady, who is officially listed as “questionable” for today’s game. Walker notes that the last time Brady was listed as “questionable”, was back on Dec. 17, 2005, when he had right shoulder and shin ailments. He went out and threw three touchdown passes and completed 20 of 31 passes for 258 yards in a 28-0 win over Tampa Bay.
Ian Rapoport also writes that while Brady may be “iffy”, it’s purely on paper and he expects him to play today.
And finally, Mike Clis of the Denver Post has an article on what Thanksgiving was like in the Gronkowski household, and it’s a short but good read.
That’s it for this morning. We’ll have updates much later this afternoon following dinner and time with the family. In the meantime I hope all of you have a good holiday, and best wishes.