Detroit Lions Thanksgiving Day Betting Trends Point in Clear Direction vs. Bears

Detroit Lions Thanksgiving Day Betting Trends Point in Clear Direction vs. Bears article feature image
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Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images. Pictured: Dan Campbell, Detroit Lions

The Detroit Lions are as much to Thanksgiving as the turkey itself, which the general public often sees as an unfortunate scenario to start their day on the couch.

Of course bettors would prefer a more exciting team playing, but real bettors ask themselves: Is there any perception of value?

Early indication is no, as the Lions, with Jared Goff baked into starting, are getting in between 40-60% of the bets and handle, depending on what book you ask.

But if you are willing to play the favorite on the moneyline in a Lions Thanksgiving Day game, the return history is something to behold.

Since 1990, when the Lions are favored in a game on the holiday, they are 10-1 straight up (91%). Over the same time period, they have been the underdog 20 times and are 3-17 (15%). 

“I don’t think people really find taking Andy Dalton and Matt Nagy on the road at -175 appealing,” said Jay Croucher, the director of trading at PointsBet. “But I do expect to see people playing it, but parlaying the other two favorites — the Bills and the Cowboys — to get above even money.”

At the current odds, that three-leg parlay pays out at +185 odds at PointsBet.

As an oddsmaker, DraftKings‘ Johnny Avello says he pays little attention to trends. 

“I’m interested in this game, not the past,” Avello said. “The interesting number to me is that the Lions are 6-4 against the spread, which means they’ve been underestimated.”

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As far as betting volume, having the traditionally bad Lions play has affected betting motivation, Avello believes. “There’s no question we write the least amount of money on it,” he said.

PointsBet, FanDuel and DraftKings are all reporting more money on the Bears as a 3-point favorite. Caesars and BetMGM have more money on the Lions. Real-time odds can be found here.

When it comes to winning outright, over 70% of the money at both BetMGM and FanDuel are on the winless Lions.

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