Networks To Celebrate John Madden During Thanksgiving Day Games

John Madden
John Madden (Image credit: Fox Sports)

CBS, Fox and NBC will all be paying tribute to former coach and Hall of Fame sportscaster John Madden when they broadcast National Football League games on Thanksgiving Day.

Each network will lead into their games with a recording of Madden — who called 20 Thanksgiving Day games over the course of his career — talking about the relationship the holiday has with football.

Each network will also create segments about the coach that will appear during their games.

At the end of each game, a Madden Player of the Game will be selected, with the winner receiving a $10,000 donation in their name from the NFL foundation to the youth or high school football program of their choice.

“No one cared more or contributed more to our game than John Madden,” said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. “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.”

Madden will also be celebrated with logos on the field at the 25-yard lines and a sticker worn on players’ helmets.

EA Sports, which created the Madden NFL video games, will present a Game Before the Game Madden NFL 23 competition between players from the teams competing in Thanksgiving games.

The @NFL Instagram and Snapchat Thanksgiving AR lens will allow fans to determine "The Best Part of Thanksgiving" via a randomizer. Users will hear the iconic “Boom!” from Madden when the randomizer lands, followed by one of his various Thanksgiving Day in-booth sound bites and surrounded by an illustrated Madden graphic.

Gabe Gault — renowned Metaverse artist and son of former NFL wide receiver Willie Gault — will paint a John Madden tribute mural in the Metaverse. The Metaverse mural will feature Madden throughout his career as a player, coach and broadcaster with his famous Thanksgiving quote stylized and woven through the art. Content will live on NFL social platforms, showing the design process and final outcome. ■

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.