Thanksgiving Sports Rewind 

November 27, 2023

By: Carlos Alvarez

Welcome Back 

A lot has happened since our last send. Michigan took down Ohio State. There’s a team in Orlando on a Magic run. And the Philadelphia Eagles still stand alone atop the NFL. Let’s do a turkey wrap and rewind all the sports action from Thanksgiving weekend.

Letter Rip!


Turkey Wrap: Week 12 Rewind

Photo: Icon Sportswire / Getty Images

The Top Moments & Storylines From the NFL’s Week of Thanksgiving Football

A holiday week of football has come and gone, but one final Monday Night Football clash serves us leftovers tonight (Bears at Vikings, 8:15 pm ET). After a three-pack on Thanksgiving Day, a Black Friday special, and 11 games on Sunday, we’ve seen the playoff picture become extra clear. The Eagles and Ravens are on top of the NFC and AFC, respectively, and Sunday was no small flight for the birds. Philly used yet another rainy comeback to get a win over the Bills before the Ravens paced the Chargers on SNF. There’s much football ahead as we near the final month of the NFL season and keep our eyes focused on the playoff picture — you’ll find more on the bracket, potential matchups, and key games down the stretch later this week. For now, we’ll rewind Thanksgiving and start with the birds on top.

Birds Of A Feather: The Eagles (10-1) and Ravens (9-3) are the only two teams with nine-or-more wins through Week 12 following some nail-biters on Sunday night. The Eagles came from behind to stun the Bills in a rain-soaked Philly classic (37-34, OT), and the Ravens outlasted the Chargers on SNF (20-10) to keep their lead in the AFC. Both clubs are the current #1 seeds in the playoff picture. Jalen Hurts had a career-high 5 TDs (3 passing, 2 rushing), and Philly has now won four straight games after trailing at halftime.

Turkey Takeovers: Two of the three Thanksgiving Day games were laughers. The Cowboys rolled the Commanders (45-10) while the 49ers handled the Seahawks (31-13). The outlier? The Packers upset the Lions (29-22) to snap Detroit’s three-game win streak. Dallas, San Fran and Detroit are all tied (8-3) for the second-best record in the NFC.

Denver Turnaround: The Broncos blew the doors off the Browns (29-12) to extend their win streak to five games. Remember, Denver started the year 1-5 and nearly blew it up at the trade deadline. QB Russell Wilson has the best TD-INT ratio (20 TDs, 4 INTs) of all starting quarterbacks.

Cowboy House Call: The Cowboys smoked the Commanders on Thanksgiving (mentioned above), but Dallas CB DaRon Bland made history to celebrate the holiday. Bland returned an NFL-record fifth pick-six (interception return TD) of the season — that’s never been done before.

Thanksgiving Day Highlights

Packers def. Lions (29-22)

Cowboys def. Commanders (45-10)

49ers def. Seahawks (31-13)

Black Friday Highlights

Dolphins def. Jets (34-13)

Sunday Week 12 Highlights

Falcons def. Saints (24-15)

Steelers def. Bengals (16-10)

Titans def. Panthers (17-10)

Colts def. Buccaneers (27-20)

Giants def. Patriots (10-7)

Jaguars def. Texans (24-21)

Broncos def. Browns (29-12)

Rams def. Cardinals (37-14)

Chiefs def. Raiders (31-17)

Eagles def. Bills (37-34, OT)

Ravens def. Chargers (20-10)

Monday Night Football

Bears at Vikings (8:15 pm ET, ESPN)

Read More

B/R: NFL Week 12 Takeaways: Biggest Storylines From Every Sunday Game

Yahoo! Sports: Jalen Hurts’ TD Run Powers Eagles Past Bills in Wild OT Thriller

The Athletic: Russell Wilson, Broncos Outlast Browns to Win NFL-Best 5th-Straight Game

CBS Sports: Cowboys’ DaRon Bland Breaks NFL Single-Season Pick-Six Record With 5th of 2023

NFL: Chiefs TE Travis Kelce Becomes Fastest TE to Reach 11,000 Yards



B1G Game, B1G Implications

Photo: Icon Sportswire / Getty Images

#3 Michigan Beats #2 Ohio State (30-24) for 3rd Straight Season, Launches Chaos in CFB Playoff Discussion

The big game with big implications just shifted the power in the Big Ten, and beyond. Michigan’s 30-24 win over Ohio State on Saturday was one to remember. The Wolverines held off the Buckeyes without head coach Jim Harbaugh as they completed a 3-0 run in another three-game stretch without their head coach due to the sign-stealing punishment. Harbaugh will be back on the sideline the rest of the way for Michigan. As for Ohio State, they\’re now 1-3 against Michigan under head coach Ryan Day, including three straight losses, which led to many questioning his future in Columbus. The Buckeyes will now await their fate. Will it be a New Year\’s Six bowl or forgiveness in a trip to the CFB Playoff?

Elsewhere across college football, the conference slates came to a close with #8 Alabama, #7 Texas, #6 Oregon, #5 Florida State, #4 Washington and #1 Georgia all victorious. The Crimson Tide needed late-game heroics — 4th & 31! — to gash Auburn in the Iron Bowl, and Washington stayed perfect with a narrow win over Wazzu. That means eight playoff-possible teams have either zero or one loss(es) heading into championship weekend. Expect the CFB Playoff Rankings to look a little different tomorrow night.

Top-10 Scores & Highlights

#1 Georgia def. Georgia Tech (31-23)

#3 Michigan def. #2 Ohio State (30-24)

#4 Washington def. Washington State (24-21)

#5 Florida State def. Florida (24-15)

#6 Oregon def. #16 Oregon State (31-7)

#7 Texas def. Texas Tech (57-7)

#8 Alabama def. Auburn (27-24)

#9 Missouri def. Arkansas (48-14)

Kentucky def. #10 Louisville

Other CFB Scores & Highlights

#11 Penn State def. Michigan State (42-0)

#12 Ole Miss def. Mississippi State (17-7)

#13 Oklahoma def. TCU (69-45)

#14 LSU def. Texas A&M (42-30)

#17 Iowa def. Nebraska (13-10)

#18 Notre Dame def. Stanford (56-23)

New AP Top-10: 1. Georgia, 2. Michigan, 3. Washington, 4. Florida State, 5. Oregon, 6. Ohio State, 7. Texas, 8. Alabama, 9. Missouri, 10. Penn State | Full Top-25

*Stay tuned for our Heisman Trophy Watch later this week.



Magic In A Bottle

Photo: Julio Aguilar / Getty Images

Orlando Magic Notch 7 Straight Wins & Quickly Turn Heads to Start 2023-24 NBA Season

Don’t look now, but one underdog NBA team just snuck their way through November and into prime position as a dark-horse candidate for the 2023-24 season. The Orlando Magic — ripe with the fifth-youngest core roster in the league — just reeled off wins No. 6 and 7 in a row over the break. The Magic beat the Celtics (113-96) and the Hornets (130-117) to extend the win streak to seven and officially climb into second in the Eastern Conference at 12-5. They’re just one game back of Boston for the best record in the East, and the entire league. Plus, they’re leading Boston in the NBA in-season tournament group play. That would’ve been hard to believe before the season began. In the NBA\’s first month, Orlando has beaten the Lakers, Nuggets, Bucks and Celtics — four of the best teams in the NBA. And they’ve done it with defense (5th-ranked defense). Not a single Magic player is averaging more than 20 points per game. Paolo Banchero (19.6 ppg) and Franz Wagner (18.9 ppg) are leading the charge.

The Magic have made the playoffs just twice in the past decade, and they were bounced in the first round both times. Could this be a new era in Orlando? Or is it simply an early-season flash of ‘Magic in a bottle’?

Watch: Magic Take Down Celtics & Hornets to Reach 7-Game Win Streak

NBA Quick-Shots

Ant’s Star is RisingAnthony Edwards was the center of attention last summer for Team USA in the FIBA World Cup, and he’s carried it over to the regular season. The Timberwolves currently lead the West with a record of 12-4, and Edwards is averaging 26-6-5. Minnesota could be seeing a similar Magic-like turnaround.

Spurs StrugglingAfter a 3-2 start to Victor Wembanyama’s rookie season, the Spurs are experiencing growing pains with their young roster. A loss to the Nuggets and reigning MVP Nikola Jokic (39-11-9) on Sunday marked San Antonio\’s 12 straight defeat, sinking them to the bottom of the NBA standings (3-14).

Suns Catching FirePhoenix has yet to put their big 3 on the court together, but Devin Booker has the Suns riding a seven-game win streak as they climb back to the top 4 in the West. The trio of Booker, Kevin Durant, and Bradley Beal have yet to share the court at the same time this season. Booker had 40 and 28 over the weekend, including a clutch 3 to beat the Knicks at MSG (116-113).



Lightning Round

Photo: Shaun Botterill / Getty Images

 EPL: Garnacho\’s Bike Strike for Man-U

Manchester United throttled Everton (3-0) in one of the weekend’s many Premier League clashes, but Alejandro Garnacho earned his spotlight in today’s edition due to a bicycle kick just three minutes in that broke the internet. If you click on one highlight today, make it this one.

 NHL: Rangers on a Roll in November

The New York Rangers won three straight over the holiday break to bring their record to a league-best 15 wins (31 points). The Rangers started the season 2-1-1 before reeling off a 13-1-1 record over their last 15. They notched seven goals against the Bruins (7-4) on Saturday, and New York looks like the top team in the NHL.

 F1: Verstappen Wins Race #19

Death, taxes, and Max Verstappen on the podium. The Formula 1 finale in Abu Dhabi brought the F1 season to a close on Sunday, and the 26-year-old Dutchman extended his single-season wins record with win No. 19 (out of 23 races). The win also made him the only driver to lead over 1,000 laps in a single season, and he’s now third all-time on the F1 wins list.

 MLS Playoffs

Houston Dynamo def. Sporting Kansas City (1-0)

LAFC def. Seattle Sounders FC (1-0)

FC Cincinnati def. Philadelphia Union (1-0)

Columbus Crew def. Orlando City SC (2-0)

 NCAA Men’s Basketball

#2 Purdue def. #4 Marquette (78-75)

#1 Kansas def. #7 Tennessee (69-60)

#3 Arizona def. #21 Michigan State (74-68)

 NCAA Women’s Basketball

#5 Iowa def. #16 Kansas State (77-70)

#2 UCLA def. #6 UConn (78-67)

#4 Stanford def. #13 Florida State (100-88)





Today\’s Must-Watch List

 Monday Night Football

Bears at Vikings (8:15 pm ET, ESPN)


Lakers at 76ers (7:00 pm ET, NBA TV)

Nuggets at Clippers (10:30 pm ET, NBA TV)


Sabres at Rangers (7:00 pm ET, ESPN+)

Lightning at Avalanche (9:00 pm ET, ESPN+)

Download The Sportsletter\’s Must-Watch Calendar