NBC is back in the Thanksgiving Day NFL game with its purchase of the primetime game, an event that had been on NFL Network since 2006. At one time, the Thanksgiving Night game began NFL Network’s Thursday Night Football schedule, but that is no longer the case.
Last year, NBC bought the rights to the Thanksgiving Night game as part of its rights extension to Sunday Night Football. NBC used to air a Thanksgiving Day game as part of its AFC package that ran until 1997-1998.
On Thursday, NBC will air the AFC East Division blood rivalry game between the New England Patriots and New York Jets live from the New Meadowlands in New Jersey. Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth and Michele Tafoya will be on-site. So will Bob Costas and Hines Ward for Football Night in America. Dan Patrick, Tony Dungy, Rodney Harrison, Peter King and Mike Florio will be in NBC’s studios across the border in New York.
Former Sunday Night Football analyst John Madden will be part of the broadcast as he’ll be on the open for the game plus he’ll be on at the end to hand out his first ever “Madden Thanksgiving Player of the Game” Award meaning that his old six leg Turducken will be back.
Here’s the NBC press release.
NEW YORK GIANTS HOST THE GREEN BAY PACKERS ON “SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL”
NBC’s First Ever Primetime Game on Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving Game Coverage Begins with Football Night in America at 8 p.m. ET
Sunday’s Coverage Begins with Football Night In America at 7 p.m. ET
John Madden to Open NBC’s Thanksgiving Night Broadcast
NBC to Present 1st Annual “Madden Thanksgiving Player-of-the-Game” on Thursday Night
NBC to Air Special Halftime Performance by Lenny Kravitz
Sunday Night Football Extra to Live Stream Patriots-Jets and Packers-Giants on NBCSports.com
NEW YORK – November 20, 2012 – On Thursday night, NBC will begin a new tradition with its first ever NFL primetime game on Thanksgiving. Tom Brady and the New England Patriots (7-3) will travel to MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. to take on Mark Sanchez and the New York Jets (4-6). The broadcast of the game begins with legendary NFL coach and analyst John Madden’s take on family, football and tradition. NBC will wrap up the night by presenting the first annual “Madden Thanksgiving Player-of-the-Game” award. Coverage begins with Football Night in America at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.
During half-time of the game, Grammy Award-winner Lenny Kravitz will perform a special Thanksgiving concert on the field and for viewers at home.
NBC’s coverage of the 2012-13 NFL season continues on Sunday night when Eli Manning and the New York Giants (6-4) host Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers (7-3) on Sunday Night Football. Coverage begins with Football Night in America at 7 p.m. ET on NBC.
Calling Patriots-Jets and Packers-Giants is six-time Emmy Award-winner Al Michaels (play-by-play), in his 27th season as the voice of the NFL’s premier primetime package; 13-time Emmy Award-winner Cris Collinsworth, who has won the Emmy for Outstanding Event Analyst in each of his three seasons in the Sunday Night Football booth; and sideline reporter Michele Tafoya, who, last year in her first season with SNF, won the inaugural Emmy Award for Outstanding Sports Reporter.
Football Night in America is hosted by 24-time Emmy Award-winner Bob Costas, who will report from MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J. Costas will be joined on site by Michaels, and Collinsworth.
On Thursday night, Costas will host a special Thanksgiving edition of Football Night In America from MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ., and will be joined on site by Dan Patrick, Super Bowl-winning head coach Tony Dungy, and two-time Super Bowl winner Rodney Harrison.
On Sunday night, Costas will again report from MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ., and will be joined on site by Hines Ward, the former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver and Super Bowl MVP.
Dan Patrick will co-host Football Night from NBC’s Studio 8G at 30 Rockefeller Plaza. Patrick will be joined in studio by Dungy, Harrison, Peter King of Sports Illustrated, and Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk on NBC Sports Network and NBCSports.com.
Michaels and Collinsworth on Patriots vs. Jets:
Patrick, Dungy and Harrison on Patriots vs. Jets:
In addition to the weekly Sunday Night Football and Football Night in America broadcasts, NBC Sports Group’s NFL coverage also includes digital content and social media extensions that are available online, as well as NFL-related shoulder programming available on NBC Sports Network.
2012 SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL REMAINING SCHEDULE
Thursday, November 22 — Week 12, New England Patriots at New York Jets
Sunday, November 25 — Week 12, Green Bay Packers at New York Giants
Sunday, December 2 — *Week 13, Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys (no change)
Sunday, December 9 — *Week 14, Detroit Lions at Green Bay Packers
Sunday, December 16 — *Week 15, San Francisco 49ers at New England Patriots
Sunday, December 23 — *Week 16, San Diego Chargers at New York Jets
Sunday, December 30 — *Week 17, TBA
That will do it.