The Thanksgiving tradition of football did not disappoint the past week — that is, unless you are a Packers, Raiders, or Steelers fan. Just as left-overs let us relive the Thanksgiving feast, one tasty turkey sandwich at a time, here is a recap Thursday’s games.
Green Bay Packers 10, Detroit Lions 40
Green Bay Guard Josh Sitton summed up this game as “embarrassing,” adding that the Lions “smacked us today. There is no doubt about it.” The Detroit Free Press published Sitton’s remarks. Smacked only begins to cover it. It is Detroit’s first Thanksgiving win since 2003 when the team beat the Packers 22 to 14. It also ended Detroit’s five-game losing streak to their Green Bay rivals.
Quarterback Matt Flynn led the Aaron Rodgers-less Packers, and was sacked seven times, losing 37 yards. He passed for 139 yards, completing 10 of 20 pass attempts. Detroit’s quarterback Matthew Stafford outperformed Flynn in every category. He completed 22 of 35 passes, for 33o yards. Stafford was sacked once, for a loss of ten yards. Stafford threw for three touchdowns, whereas Flynn did not have any. Detroit possessed the ball for 40 minutes, double Green Bay’s 19 minutes of possession. They gained a total of 561 yards, and only gave up 126. Reggie Bush rushed for 117 yards, scoring a touchdown for Detroit, and Calvin Johnson’s six receptions gained 101 yards for Detroit,and one touchdown.
Detroit is 7 and 5 for the season; Green Bay is 5, 6, and 1.
Oakland Raiders 24, Dallas Cowboys 31
Things could have been very ugly for the Dallas Cowboys. Going into Thursday’s game, Oakland was 1 and 4 in away games, and Dallas was 4 and 1 at home. That looked ready to change when the Raiders opened the game by scoring a touchdown off a Cowboys fumble. Add to that Cowboy’s quarterback Tony Romo had a virus, and the beginning of this mid-day matchup looked doomed for Dallas.
Romo and Raiders quarterback Matt McGloin both had 255 passing yards, but Romo was sacked twice, losing 17 yards. The Cowboys obliterated the Raiders in rushing yards, 144 to 50. Eighty-two of the Cowboys rushing yards came from Lance Dunbar — a career high. Andre Holmes of the Raiders also had career highs, with seven catches for 136 yards. ESPN reports that Raiders coach Dennis Allen attributed the loss to his team wearing down in the second half. ”They were able to run the ball, and we weren’t able to get off the field,” Allen said.
Dallas is 7 and 5; Oakland is 4 and 8
Pittsburgh Steelers 20, Baltimore Ravens 22
This primetime rivalry delivered on drama, including controversy involving Steelers coach Mike Tomlin. Tomlin was standing on the field at one point during the game, potentially disrupting play, but no call was made by the referee.
The Ravens dominated the scoreboard for the first half, and the Steelers wouldn’t score until the third-quarter on a pass from quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders. Baltimore led the entire game, but a two-point conversion by Pittsburgh would have tied the score late in the fourth-quarter. It was 20 to 22 when Roethlisberger attempted the play, passing to Sanders, but Chykie Brown of the Ravens broke up the pass.
The stats show two teams, posting similar numbers. Roethlisberger passed for 257 yards, completing 28 of 44 attempts. Joe Flacco, quarterback for the Ravens, lost 14 yards from two sacks, but passed for 251 yards. Flacco completed 24 of 35 attempted passes. Each team possessed the ball for approximately 30 minutes. The win gave the Ravens, who are now 6 and 6, an edge for a wild card spot in the AFC. Pittsburgh, 5 and 7, is one of the teams they are battling against for the position.