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Gerry Dulac's NFL Forecast

Thursday, November 26, 1998

By Gerry Dulac, Post-Gazette Sports Writer

Steelers (7-4) at Lions (4-7)

12:30 p.m., KDKA-TV;
Announcers: Greg Gumbel, Phil Simms

Thanksgiving in Detroit has not been kind to the Steelers. Last time this occurred, they were stuffed, 45-3, by the Lions. That, though, was in 1983, so long ago that even Bill Cowher doesn't remember the game. Detroit, quite naturally, is putting on its last-season push, commonly referred to as the Wayne Fontes Surge. It became an annual rite of late fall/winter in Detroit, when the Lions played hopelessly pathetic for 10 games, then rallied in the final weeks to contend for a playoff berth and save the coach's job. Even under Bobby Ross, it's still happening. Last year the Lions were 4-6 and won five of their last six to make the playoffs. Now, after starting 2-7, they have won their past two games and are hoping their all-time Thanksgiving Day record (29-27-2) will help make it three. One thing about turkeys, though: No matter how you carve 'em, they're still a turkey.

Prediction: Steelers, 27-16

Vikings (10-1) at Cowboys (8-3)

4 p.m., WPGH,
Announcers: Pat Summerall, John Madden

Gee, wonder if the network will do something innovative this year and have, say, a camera in the MaddenCruiser, showing the turkey waiting on the table? Ya' know who's really salivating for this one? Deion Sanders, who can't wait to show Randy Moss a thing or two. The Vikings rookie continues to make the rest of the NFL cornerbacks look like turkeys, but Sanders loves the big matchups in big games on national television. If you don't like hot dogs on Thanksgiving, then you'd better turn off the TV. The Viking are coming off a second-straight beating of the Packers and are comfortably enough ahead in the NFC Central to fret about a big game in Dallas. The Cowboys don't have any competition in the NFC Least, either, but they love playing on Thanksgiving Day.

Prediction: Cowboys, 24-20

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