A moment of silence is held for John Madden Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Last year, the NFL began a tradition of spending Thanksgiving paying tribute to John Madden.

In what will mark the second holiday since his passing in late-2021, the NFL will once again honor the legendary head coach and broadcaster next week in the second edition of the “John Madden Thanksgiving Celebration.”

Each game in the league’s Thanksgiving triple-header, which will include broadcasts on Fox, CBS and NBC, will begin with a special NFL-produced “Madden Hallmark” featuring Madden describing what the holiday meant to him.

“There’s no place that I would rather be today on Thanksgiving than right here, right now, at a football game,” Madden can be heard saying in the video.

Additionally, each network will select a player of the game in its respective matchups, who will receive a $10,000 donation from the NFL Foundation to be given to a high school or youth football program in their name in honor of the legend’s affinity for youth football.

The tributes don’t stop there, as each game will use a coin featuring a silhouette of Madden on one side (“heads”) and a six-legged turducken on the reverse side (“tails) for the pregame coin toss. Players will also wear patches displaying Madden’s silhouette on their jerseys, while special “John Madden Thanksgiving Celebration” stencils will be placed at the sidelines of each game.

John Madden Coin
A rendering of the special John Madden coin.
John Madden Patch
The John Madden jersey patch NFL teams will wear on Thanksgiving.

Other details of the NFL’s tribute this year include the league’s radio broadcast partners, Westwood One and SiriusXM NFL Radio, airing Madden and Thanksgiving-related programming throughout the week and the league’s social media handles across X (formerly Twitter), Snapchat, TikTok, Reddit, YouTube, AP Images and others posting content and imagery related to Thanksgiving throughout the day.

As for the games themselves, the NFL’s 2023 Thanksgiving schedule is as follows:

  • 12:30 p.m. ET: Detroit Lions vs. Green Bay Packers (Fox)
  • 4:30 p.m. ET: Dallas Cowboys vs. Washington Commanders (CBS)
  • 8:20 p.m. ET: Seattle Seahawks vs. San Francisco 49ers (NBC)

[NFL Communications]

About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.