New England (6-5) at Detroit (3-8)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: Detroit, MI
Temp: 72° F
  • Game info: 12:30 pm EST Thu Nov 28, 2002
  • TV: CBS
Preview | Box Score | Recap

DETROIT (TICKER) —The New England Patriots did not have anything to celebrate the last time they spent Thanksgiving Day in Detroit.

It is the second time in the last three seasons that the Lions are hosting the Patriots in their annual Thanksgiving Day game. In 2000, the Lions rolled to a 34-9 victory at the Pontiac Silverdome.

But that loss for the Patriots came in a season where they finished 5-11 and in last place in the AFC East. New England is a far different team this time around, coming to Ford Field as the defending Super Bowl champions.

The Patriots, who are concluding a busy stretch of five games in 25 days with this contest, are tied with the New York Jets for second place in their division, one game behind Miami.

New England does have a favorable schedule down the stretch, playing three of its last four games at home following this contest.

On Sunday, Tom Brady completed 21-of-34 passes for 239 yards and three touchdowns as the Patriots built an early lead before holding on for a 24-17 victory over the Minnesota Vikings.

Since 1934, the Lions have played 62 Thanksgiving Day games and posted a 32-28-2 record. New England is 0-2 on the holiday, also losing at Dallas 1984.

The Lions will be hoping some of their Thanksgiving Day success carries over as they enter this contest in the midst of a three-game losing streak.

Detroit coach Marty Mornhinweg made a questionable decision in last Sunday’s 20-17 overtime loss at Chicago.

In overtime, the Lions won the coin toss, but Mornhinweg elected to kickoff and the Bears drove down the field for the winning field goal.

Rookie Joey Harrington struggled against the Bears, completing 21-of-40 passes for 213 yards, one touchdown and an interception. He could be in for another long day here against the Partiots and coach Bill Belichick, who is considered one of the game’s best defensive minds.

Detroit leads the series, 4-3.

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