NFL dream no longer pie in the sky for Lions lineman Dan Skipper

allen park —Four years ago, the Sunday before Thanksgiving was just another mile marker on an endless desert road. But last Sunday, Dan Skipper’s workday ended with the National Football League leader in rushing touchdowns stopping his postgame press conference to shout it out.

“Hello Skippy. I love you man. That guy over there…” Lions running back Jamaal Williams said. I love Skipper. He is so cool.

Skipper, a 28-year-old offensive lineman, was out of the league in 2018. He prepared for Thanksgiving as a member of the service industry. He baked pies, lots and lots of pies, to the point of giving up on them forever, at Sky High Pie Shop in Frisco, Texas, owned by the parents of his wife, Mackenzie.

His daily tasks included working two batches of pie crusts (85 doughs per batch, he said) and helping out with anything else the bosses needed.

“The week before Thanksgiving, we removed 2,000 pies or something,” Skipper said. “So I don’t eat cake anymore. You’re mixing 35 pounds of pumpkin, nine pounds of cream cheese. I’m not well.”

The Lions' Dan Skipper watches from the sideline late in the fourth quarter with Detroit unable to put points on the board.

Her preparation for Thanksgiving this year isn’t more glamorous, but it is, if nothing else, a dream come true. With the status of Detroit’s typical starting guards Evan Brown (ankle) and Jonah Jackson (concussion protocol) up in the air, Skipper heads toward his fourth Thanksgiving start of the season as the Lions (4-6). They look to extend a three-game winning streak by hosting the Buffalo Bills (7-3).

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