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2024 NFL schedule release: Thanksgiving/Black Friday slate offers up three divisional tilts

Wednesday's schedule release included the unveiling of the annual Thanksgiving tripleheader and the second annual Black Friday game. If the traditional meal on Thursday and the subsequent savings on Friday don't satisfy the hunger of fans across the country, the football certainly will.

Three division rivalries and one intraconference showdown between 2023 playoff teams highlight the two-day slate:


Caleb Williams' arrival has injected new life -- and interest -- into the Chicago Bears, and the NFL's schedule wizards are joining the party by putting them on the Thanksgiving docket.

Chicago will face a massive test on the holiday when it hits the road for Detroit to take on the division-rival Lions, defenders of the NFC North title.

The game will pit the No. 1 overall pick, Williams, against one of the highest-paid quarterbacks in the NFL, Jared Goff . That will be the draw, but this contest will be about much more than just that.

Detroit sprinted to the division title in 2023 for the first time in 30 years, then rattled off two playoff wins before falling to the San Francisco 49ers in a heartbreaker in the NFC Championship Game. Amid that stretch of success, though, the Lions still failed to protect their house on Thanksgiving, losing to the Packers in shocking fashion and kicking off Green Bay's own run to the postseason.

This time around, they'll meet another team with aspirations of making the leap behind the strength of a young, promising quarterback -- and it could have significant implications in the NFC North race.

Thanks to Green Bay's sudden second-half blossoming in 2023, plus an offseason filled with good vibes for the Bears, the NFC North is suddenly a hot division many expect to be a brawl for the throne. Detroit currently sits on it, but will have to protect its reign in games such as this Thanksgiving tilt. The Lions will have to avoid a repeat performance of their last outing against Chicago, a 28-13 loss to the Bears in the Windy City.

They'll have the backing of Ford Field on their side this time around.

  • WHERE: AT&T Stadium (Arlington, Texas)
  • WHEN: 4:30 p.m. ET | FOX

Thanksgiving will continue with another division rivalry, this time in Big D.

The Dallas Cowboys will fill their role as traditional hosts on the holiday, welcoming in the New York Giants to AT&T Stadium.

It's a rivalry because they call the same division home, but the Cowboys have owned the advantage in the last three seasons, going a perfect 6-0 in that span. Most -- including their two meetings in 2023 -- have been lopsided, and it will be up to the Giants to dig themselves out of the hole they excavated in last year's disappointing campaign.

That begins with Daniel Jones, whose health issues became a problem once again in 2023, limiting him to a career-low six games. After wading through an offseason that included rumors of New York looking for another option under center via the draft, Jones will have to first stay healthy before attempting to silence the doubters. He could do so by scoring a win over the Cowboys on Thanksgiving.

Dallas has enjoyed a bit of good fortune on Thanksgiving over the last two years, winning each of its holiday games, including a rout over the Washington Commanders in 2023. Some of the team's members might experience a bit of deja vu this time around: The Cowboys played the Giants on Thanksgiving in 2022, scoring a 28-20 win during a season in which New York made a leap forward in their first campaign under head coach Brian Daboll.

Two years later, the Giants are in a different -- and more desperate -- place. We'll see if they can deliver on Thanksgiving, or if Dallas will extend its winning streak to three.

  • WHERE: Lambeau Field (Green Bay, Wisc.)
  • WHEN: 8:20 p.m. ET | NBC

To wrap up the Thanksgiving festivities, two old coworkers will face off in the prime-time slot when the Packers take on the Dolphins in Green Bay.

It will be the second meeting between Packers head coach Matt LaFleur and Dolphins HC Mike McDaniel, who worked alongside each other in Houston, Atlanta and Washington. They first met as dueling head coaches on another holiday -- Christmas -- in the 2022 season, leading to an upset win for Aaron Rodgers and the Packers.

This time around, their showdown will pit Dolphins passer Tua Tagovailoa against rising star signal-caller Jordan Love, and instead of opening gifts, fans will be coming out of their late-afternoon, turkey-and-stuffing-induced naps to catch two teams many expect to be playoff contenders.

Miami has found itself riding waves of momentum through the middle portion of the season in each of the last two years, but have arrived at the same disappointing result once the playoffs arrive: a Super Wild Card Weekend exit. Green Bay, meanwhile, peaked at the perfect time in 2023, reaching the Divisional Round on a surprise run that began with the Packers' dominant win over the Lions on Thanksgiving.

Both enter 2024 with high expectations. Should they live up to them, this matchup should produce a dandy as the NFL calendar approaches December.


  • WHERE: GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium (Kansas City, Mo.)
  • WHEN: 3 p.m. ET | Prime Video

The NFL is re-running a matchup that produced a shocking upset on a holiday.

This time around, Raiders-Chiefs will not be played on Christmas, but on Black Friday, fittingly including the Silver and Black on a such a holiday.

Christmas was a dark day for the Chiefs last season, but also a turning point. Las Vegas rolled into Kansas City, scored two defensive touchdowns and outlasted the host Chiefs in a stunning 20-14 win, pushing Las Vegas to 7-8 and forcing Kansas City to take a long, hard look at itself.

That moment produced a champion. Chiefs coach Andy Reid later thanked Raiders interim (now permanent) head coach Antonio Pierce for putting a whooping on his team on that day, which taught Kansas City a much-needed lesson about complacency.

After that loss, the Chiefs rattled off six straight wins, capping their streak with an overtime win over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LVIII.

In 2024, they will rekindle their long-running rivalry on a day reserved for shopping and relaxing. Most everyone will hope the game ends up being more captivating than the lopsided debut of the Black Friday game last season, in which the Dolphins dominated an undermanned Jets team.

The Chiefs-Raiders rivalry needs no explaining. After enduring a tumultuous 2023 campaign, the Raiders are hoping to embark on a new era under Pierce in 2024, perhaps by adding another win over their AFC West foes.

The Chiefs, meanwhile, remain focused on one goal: winning another Super Bowl. Part of that journey will include two dates with the Raiders, including their first-ever meeting on Black Friday.

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