We should be treated to three competitive Thanksgiving Day games this year, and each currently has a spread below two points. I have a reasonably strong opinion on all three games and was happy to bet them early. This could all backfire if the teams I bet on have poor performances on Sunday, but I believe each can exceed expectations, leading to a worse Thanksgiving line come Monday morning.
Houston Texans at Detroit Lions
Up until early this week, the Houston Texans were still receiving more respect in the market than their play deserved. Everyone rightly gave the Texans somewhat of a pass after opening the season with the Chiefs, Ravens, and Steelers. But since then, the Texans have only managed to beat one team, the Jaguars.
The Texans opened as favorites hosting the Patriots this Sunday. But as more and more people realize home field means nothing in 2020, the line flipped to New England as the favorite. If the Texans were to lose again, and this time to a decidedly average to below-average Patriots team, the Thanksgiving Day line will be up to at least Lions -3.
Now, the Lions also need to take care of business. And luckily for them, they may be facing the Panthers without Teddy Two Gloves. Even if Teddy plays, the Lions have a reasonable chance to beat the Panthers on Sunday.
I can only see this line getting higher in the next week, so I’m locking in Lions -1.5 now.
The Bet: Lions -1.5
Washington Football Team at Dallas Cowboys
The theme continues for the Thanksgiving Day afternoon game, as I am on the home Cowboys. The Vikings pass defense has been Swiss cheese for every game that hasn’t been played against the Bears in 2020. I expect Andy Dalton to find his weapons on Sunday and at the very least keep the game competitive.
The Cowboys are also much healthier on defense than they have been all season. Coming off a bye, I expect a strong performance from a team that is miraculously still in the heart of a division title race.
If the Cowboys look good on Sunday, again I believe this line will creep up to -3 in the coming week.
The Bet: Cowboys -1.5
Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers
One of the trendier plays in Week 11 is taking the Titans plus the points against the Ravens. That game opened at Ravens -7 and has been bet down to -5. If the steam on the Titans has merit, there could very easily be an upset loss coming on Sunday for the Ravens.
The Steelers will get a layup game on Sunday at Jacksonville. And we shouldn’t have to worry about a letdown after what happened to Pittsburgh in Dallas the other week.
But regardless of Sunday’s games, this line is simply too short. The Steelers are the better team and I’m happy to get this number under three points. I expect this to be Steelers -3 at minimum by Thanksgiving night.
The Bet: Steelers -1.5