Monday 23 October 2017 / 06:05 AM

Thanksgiving games start to clear NFC

While football fans this Turkey Day were hardly treated to any down-to-the-wire nail-biters, at the very least a muddled NFC playoff picture was given a little bit of clarity with just a handful of weeks of the season left to play.

Here are three take-aways from Thursday’s action:

1. Megatron is back. Calvin Johnson had perhaps his best game of the season as he hauled in 11 catches for 146 yards and two first half touchdowns.

Detroit boosted their post-season aspirations by pummeling the Bears 34-17.

Chicago jumped out to a quick 14-3 lead before Matthew Stafford and his receivers got in sync and the Lions’ (#2 in the NFL) defense tightened their belts. Stafford finished with 390 yards and a pair of TDs to Megatron.

While Detroit still trails the Packers in the NFC North, they were able to snap a two-game skid and improve their record to (8-4).

2. Philly is the team to beat in the NFC East after they embarrassed the Cowboys 33-10 in Dallas. But this really wasn’t much of a surprise – I mean, the Eagles have never lost on Thanksgiving.

Mark Sanchez had a solid performance in the win, with 217 yards and one touchdown pass with a second score on the ground. He was able to erase the Ghost of Thanksgiving Past as the holiday marked the two-year anniversary of his infamous butt fumble.

Shady McCoy ran wild on the Cowboys defense, racking up 159 yards and a score on just 25 carries (average 6.4 YPC).

3. Richard Sherman elevates his game against the Niners.

In the much anticipated rematch of last season’s NFC Championship, Seattle looked to be just that: back in championship form. In back-to-back weeks the Hawks have beat both the Cardinals and the 49ers 19-3 as the D is beginning to assert itself and remind us why the unit was the league’s top defense in 2013.

The Seahawks have now won five of their last six and seem to be gaining momentum at just the right time.

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Michael Airhart

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