Vince Lombardi told his players to prioritize the three F's of their life in the order of faith, family and football.
Those lines tend to blur in Wisconsin, where the Green Bay Packers are fan owned. Families gathering for Thanksgiving are basically ownership meetings. Jerseys are considered formal enough for church, where sermons are likely to make reference to a team that is the very fabric of the state's culture.
Why not? Jesus spoke in parables to His followers, helping them to learn how to apply knowledge from those things more familiar to those things less tangible.
Not only are the Packers familiar to fans, but the results are tangible. Football is perfect not only because it is widely enjoyed, but largely offers very measurable results for the choices made.
Everything carries a lesson.
Take the Seattle Seahawks "win" on a Hail Mary in Week 3. It should never have happened because an interception was nullified by a penalty on a rule that was not to apply outside the pocket. A penalty was left uncalled on the play.
And of course there is no way it was a simultaneous catch. Set aside that the ball was secured (even if by two players) against the body of M.D. Jennings, making any justification that control was shared irrational.
The rule is not whether it is a shared possession, but whether that possession was simultaneous. Jennings was the first to control it, even if the catch was not considered complete until he landed in the end zone.
The Packers could focus on the potential that the loss might result in a poorer seed or no playoff berth at all. Or Green Bay can be thankful the play is widely viewed as the worst call ever, generating goodwill and ending the NFL referee lockout. (The league's version that the lockout was ending anyway is about as believable as their justification for the blown call.)
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we can focus on what we have rather than what we lack. Now that every team has played 10 games (so things can be measured on a level playing field), here are the top 10 things Packers fans have to be thankful for leading up to the 2012 holiday...