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NFL and Christmas

December 18, 2011

When the NFL plays a full slate of games on Saturday December 24th, it will be the third time that has happened. The NFL does not want a full schedule on Christmas Day and this is the third time the regular season was still going on Christmas Day.

In 1971, the league had two divisional round games on Christmas day, eventual champion Dallas winning at Minnesota while eventual runner-up Miami won in the second overtime quarter at Kansas City.

The next time Christmas fell on a Sunday, 1977, the league scheduled around it and had 2 games on Saturday and two on Monday. For the record, another six quarter game saw Oakland beat the Baltimore Colts and Denver beat Pittsburgh. Then on Monday, Dallas which went on to win its second title that year beat Chicago before Minnesota won in the mud at Los Angeles against the Rams when Los Angeles had a football team.

In both 1983 and 1988, the next two times Christmas fell on a Sunday, there was one wild card game on Saturday and one on Monday. In 1983, Seattle won at home vs Denver while on Monday, the Rams beat Dallas.In 1988 on Saturday December 24th, The Houston Oilers now the Tennessee Titans,  beat the Cleveland Browns, the old ones and a franchise that did become the Baltimore Ravens. On Monday December 26th, Minnesota won at home vs the Los Angeles Rams.

The two previous years with full slates on Saturday December 24th were 1994 and 2005.

Andy B

Merry Christmas

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