The Detroit Lions have been the butts of everybody’s Thanksgiving Day jokes for years.
“We cooked the turkey longer than the Lions were in the game!”
“Food, family and Lions losses—a Thanksgiving tradition!”
For the longest time, 2003 to be exact, such catcalls were more than justified. Detroit had both good and bad teams that didn’t show up to play on Thanksgiving, and as a result, people began to suggest the NFL strip the team and city of its proudest football tradition.
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In the last two seasons, though, that argument has now begun to dissipate, especially after Detroit led blowouts of two of their biggest NFC North rivals in Green Bay and Chicago. If anything, it was those fan bases and the nation that should have lost interest late because of a barrage of Detroit points and big plays.
Victories in both years have been critical for the Lions in flipping the script and proving they’re not merely Thanksgiving seconds. Now, the team should actually begin to be looked at as a behemoth on their special day, capable of scoring points and dominating games. It’s been quite a reversal of fortune from the usual sloppiness which had dominated the previous decade.
Thankfully, for those who are still non-believers, time has taken over and the league has instituted different games for folks to enjoy. For everyone else, Lions football remains an important part of the holiday season, and an important tradition that gets handed down generationally. Certainly, it’s not something that anyone should have delighted in seeing threatened.
With the momentum they’ve begun to build, though, the Lions could press forward and turn Thanksgiving into their own personal Super Bowl. The game means everything to the city, and lately, the team has begun to take things just as personally, which is a refreshing sight to see after all the recent losing.
The game means everything to the city, and lately, the team has begun to take things just as personally, which is a refreshing sight to see after all the recent losing.
This past Thanksgiving helped reaffirm the belief that the Lions are good enough to keep their game, and the NFL shouldn’t switch the team from hosting simply because of a bad run. Due to advertising and circumstance, it was probably never going to happen anyway, but at least the pathetic catcalls from a vocal minority have now been silenced.
For this reason, the Lions’ victory this past Thursday afternoon was a huge step in the right direction for the team and the franchise. The Thanksgiving game belongs in Detroit, and now, everyone has a few wins to help aid that assessment.