NFL Expert Picks: Our Staff’s 16 Favorite Thanksgiving Bets
Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports
- The Lions and Bears will get our Thanksgiving NFL betting action started at 12:30 p.m. ET on CBS.
- Our staff gives their 16 favorite NFL bets for the day that span across all three games on Thursday.
- Also, find out which two props our staff likes for the night cap between the Saints and Falcons.
Turkey, sides, a few drinks, your couch and betting on football. That’s as American as it gets to me and why Thanksgiving is king when it comes to holidays for bettors.
And when your Aunt asks you what your favorite Thanksgiving side is, tell her about your favorite NFL bet. Oh, and don’t worry about how many sides you eat — you’ll burn it all off sweating games throughout the day and rest of the weekend.
That’s at least what I tell myself.
To help you finalize your NFL action for Thursday, we asked members of our staff to provide their single favorite Thanksgiving NFL bet.
We have selections for all three games, including sides, totals and even a few props. Let’s get into our 16 favorite Thursday NFL bets, starting with the NFC North showdown in Detroit. — Stuckey
>> All odds pulled on the afternoon of Nov. 21, so slight line variations are possible. Download The Action Network App to get real-time NFL odds and track your bets.
Betting odds: Bears at Lions
- Odds: Bears -3
- Over/Under: 43
- Time: 12:30 p.m. ET
- TV: CBS
Matt LaMarca: Bears -3
I don’t typically like betting on favorites — particularly road favorites — but Thursday football games are the exception. The short week really seems to benefit the superior team: Thursday favorites are 93-62-3 against the spread (ATS) since 2003, including 7-2 ATS this season.
The metrics suggest there is a massive gulf in talent between these two teams, with the Bears currently ranking third in DVOA and the Lions ranking 29th (per Football Outsiders).
The Bears will likely be without quarterback Mitch Trubisky, but the downgrade to backup Chase Daniel is probably not as large as the public thinks.
It also dropped this line to the key number of three, and the Lions are dealing with some injuries of their own: They’re expected to be without both Kerryon Johnson and Marvin Jones, which is not ideal against the best defense in the league.
Collin Wilson: Lions +3
I’m going to disagree slightly with Matt here. I played the Lions at +4 earlier in the week and still like them if you can find a +3 or better (which I think you should between now and kickoff). The Bears were just -7 when these two teams met earlier this month in Chicago, implying the Lions would have been +1 at home.
Now, just a few weeks later, the Bears are 3-point favorites on a short turnaround after an emotional win without their starting quarterback? Crazy. Oh, and I get to fade Chase Daniel.
Stuckey: Lions +8.5/Eagles PK Teaser
While I agree more with Collin on the Lions, for those who still can’t decide or missed the number you wanted on the Lions, let me offer a solution: a six-point teaser that I played earlier in the week.
This fits my teaser criteria of teasing two NFL sides across multiple key numbers (the only time I’d ever advise anybody to utilize teasers). I think teasing the Lions up over eight holds even more value in a game that shouldn’t feature many points.
Enjoy the turkey binge and please never tease through zero.
Betting odds: Redskins at Cowboys
- Odds: Cowboys -7
- Over/Under: 40.5
- Time: 4:30 p.m. ET
- TV: FOX