Video: John Madden and Pat Summerall Were the Essence of Thanksgiving

Videos by OutKick

For a number of years around this time of year, I have gone and sought out highlight videos of John Madden and Pat Summerall holding court on Thanksgiving. Alas, the videos existed nowhere online. I eventually got to a point at The Big Lead where I got Fox Sports PR to send me the clips from above for a deeper profile on Madden and Summerall.

I’d be remiss if I brought this up without talking about the turducken, the delicacy that is a duck stuffed inside a chicken stuffed inside a turkey that Madden helped popularize in the 1980s and 90s. Madden became aware of the triple bird when a Saints assistant introduced him to Glenn Mistich, who operated The Gourmet Butcher Block in New Orleans and sent a turducken up to the booth. There was crawfish and Creole dressing in it, and it was sliced like a cake. If you want to read the full origin story of the turducken, the New Orleans Times-Picayune did a deep dive on the topic in 2005.

What Madden and Summerall most accomplished, and this is no easy feat, was transcending that barrier of the television screen such that it felt like they were hanging out with us in our living rooms. They had a sincere joy in the broadcasting booth and were excellent stewards of Americana.


Written by Ryan Glasspiegel

Ryan Glasspiegel grew up in Connecticut, graduated from University of Wisconsin-Madison, and lives in Chicago. Before OutKick, he wrote for Sports Illustrated and The Big Lead. He enjoys expensive bourbon and cheap beer.


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  1. Thanksgiving is an American Holiday. i Love what this day represents. i just tried watching the national anthem for the detroit game and stafford and the other ‘unacomplished’ qb kneeling during the anthem. they can kiss my ass. i’m going for a beautiful Florida bike ride. i’ll try again to watch the Redskins. chiefskins. foreskins. whatever their name. if they kneel too, then its golf, tennis or wind surfing until sunset.

    Football and Thanksgiving were American Condiments to the American Way. can’t disrespect the country and claim to be American at the same time. Suck It NFL!!!

  2. When the uninformed ask you to provide an example of what we mean when we say Make America Great Again, this collage of old tapes of Summeral & Madden is exactly what we mean. When I saw the Lions & Texan players k welding for the National Anthem I lost my appetite. God Bless America. We need him right now. 🇺🇸🇺🇸

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