“Football Night In America” Notes & Quotes – Thanksgiving

“It’s a bad rule.” – Tony Dungy on controversial play in Texans-Lions game

“This is just not a very good team.” – Rodney Harrison on the Dallas Cowboys

“This is a great addition to the tradition.” – John Madden on NBC’s first Thanksgiving night game

NEW YORK – November 22, 2012 – Following are highlights for Football Night in America. Bob Costas opened the special Thanksgiving night show live from inside MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., where the Jets are hosting the New England Patriots.

Dan Patrick co-hosted the program from the field at MetLife Stadium and was joined by Football Night in America analysts Tony Dungy and Rodney Harrison.

John Madden narrated a special taped open just prior to kickoff.

Following are highlights from Football Night in America:


Tradition has never struck me as only being about the past. It’s always taking on new pieces from here, new pieces from there. Tradition is always evolving.

I think Thanksgiving is a great example of that.

A game like football comes along, years and years ago, and it seems like a great fit for the holiday.

So boom – they start playing football on Thanksgiving.

And the years go by, television comes along, and that becomes a big part of the whole deal.

So people watch the games while they eat and eat and eat all day …

They roast the turkey. Fry the turkey. Stuff it. Hey, we used to stuff it with a chicken stuffed in a duck, if you can believe it.

Some things are new, some things are familiar.

Football’s the same way.

There’s a lot of tradition, but it’s always evolving. It’s always growing. And that’s a big part of why people love it so much.

And it’s like we say at the table in my house. If you want more of something, hey, go have some more.

So a game tonight, in primetime, on NBC, two big rivals. To me – it’s a perfect new addition to the tradition.



Patrick on Robert Griffin III’s statistics: “Those are video game numbers.”

Harrison on the Cowboys: “We fall in love with this team because they’re physically talented, but we see time and time again the mental mistakes and it’s the mistakes by the best players. Part of leadership is showing poise and taking care of the ball. We’ve seen the fourth-quarter mistakes. I just believe this is just not a very good team.”


Dungy: “It’s a bad rule. It should be a penalty if you do that, but you should still get to review the play. Jim Schwartz knows the rule, but you have to keep your composure as a coach. You preach that to your players. You cannot throw the flag and cost your team seven points.”

Patrick: “It’s such a monumental play here and a big turnaround here, and it cost the Lions the game.”

Harrison: “As a player, you have to finish the play. The Detroit Lions, they play hard. They take on the personality of their coach. At times, they’re tough, they’re emotional. But they lack discipline, and once they get to the point that they can instill more discipline into this team, they’ll start winning these football games.”

Dungy: “…emotional coach cost them seven points.”


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