NFL To Honor John Madden's Legacy With Special New Tradition On Thanksgiving Day

Thanksgiving is synonymous with football and football is synonymous with John Madden. That will continue to be the case every year for the foreseeable future as the NFL honors the late, great coaching and broadcasting legend on the fourth Thursday of November.

The inaugural, annual 'John Madden Thanksgiving Celebration' will take place later this month. It will feature several tributes in his memory.

Madden, who coached the Raiders to a Super Bowl title in 1976, spent time in the booth for ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC. His legacy and greatness transcends his time on earth.

Of the many things for which Madden was and is famous for, his love of Thanksgiving is near the top. He relished the holiday and enjoyed entertaining people with football and food.

Whether he was breaking down the anatomy of a "turducken" or shoving a turkey leg in the mouth of the best player from each game, his personality always shined through greater than ever in late November.

Honoring John Madden on Thanksgiving Day was meant to be.

"No one cared more or contributed more to our game than John Madden," NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said. "Honoring his memory and impact on the NFL is important and Thanksgiving Day brings all of the elements significant to John to life - family, football, food and fun."

Three games are slated to be played on Thanksgiving Day: Bills vs. Lions, Giants vs. Cowboys, and Patriots vs. Vikings. Prior to each game, on three different networks, a tribute video will run in Madden's honor.

On the field, players will wear a Madden sticker on the back of their helmets. A Madden logo will also be painted on the 25-yard-line of all three fields.

In addition, the 'Madden Player of the Game' will be named after the conclusion of all three fourth quarters. The player who earns the honor will receive $10,000 to donate to a youth or high school football program of their choosing.

All in all, there is no better way to honor John Madden. He is synonymous with the NFL and the NFL is synonymous with Thanksgiving.