NFL Thanksgiving Betting Trends, Stats, Notes: Action Network Betting Primer

NFL Thanksgiving Betting Trends, Stats, Notes: Action Network Betting Primer article feature image

Thanksgiving Week has arrived and we have three games on Thursday: BillsLions, GiantsCowboys and PatriotsVikings.

Let's look at the slate with the betting trends, stats and notes you need to know. Welcome to the Thanksgiving special of Action Network's NFL betting primer.

All data, stats and trends are updated as of Thursday, Nov. 24, 11 a.m. ET.

1. Favorites on Thanksgiving

Since 2004, favorites on Thanksgiving are 43-8 straight up (SU) and 35-16 against the spread (ATS).

In that span, road favorites are 23-1 SU and 19-5 ATS on Thanksgiving with the only loss coming back in 2009, when the Giants lost to the Broncos, 26-6.

2. Getting Up There

With an over/under above 54, the Bills-Lions game would be the 4th-highest over/under on Thanksgiving over the last 40 years.

Highest O/U on Thanksgiving Last 40 Years

  • 61 == ATL/NO (2018), 31-17
  • 56.5 == PHI/DAL (2014), 33-10
  • 55 == GB/DET (2011), 27-15
  • 54.5 == BUF/DET (2022)

3. Public Party!

Betting Thanksgiving in the past has been as easy as following the crowds.

  • Favorites with 60%+ of tickets are 20-7 ATS 
  • Public sides (51%+ of tickets) are 30-17 ATS 
  • Public sides, who are favorites, are 27-12 ATS 

Public sides are .500 ATS or better every year since 2014 and nine of the last 10 years.

4. Upset Stomach?

Both the Bills and Cowboys are big favorites this week and we could see some history…

Biggest Upsets on Thanksgiving since 1980

  • 1993 — Dolphins +10 over DAL
  • 2015 — Bears +7.5 over GB
  • 1986 — Seahawks +7.5 over DAL
  • 2021 — Raiders +7 over DAL
  • 1993 — Bears +7 over DET
  • 1989 — Lions +7 over CLE

Thanksgiving Day Slate 

Click on one of the matchups below to navigate to a specific game.

Click on a topic to skip ahead
Sharp Report
How the Pros Are Betting Thanksgiving
5 Thanksgiving Betting DYK
Action Audio
Best NFL Podcasts for Thanksgiving

Game-By-Game Breakdown

Bills at Lions 
Channel: CBS | 12:30 p.m. ET (THU)
Line: BUF (-9.5) | O/U: 54.5
Josh Allen, BUF
2022CareerRoad (Career)
4-5-1 ATS
7-3 SU
41-30-5 ATS
49-27 SU
20-14-2 ATS
20-16 SU
Jared Goff, DET
2022CareerHome (Career)
6-4 ATS
4-6 SU
51-45-2 ATS
51-46-1 SU
23-22-2 ATS
25-22 SU

+ The over/under for Bills-Lions is north of 50. Totals of at least 50 played on Thursday are 24-14-1 to the under over the last 20 years.

+ Bills road unders are 5-0 this season, going under by 10.8 PPG.

+ The Bills have played twice on Thanksgiving since 2019 with Josh Allen. They are 2-0 SU/ATS, covering by 17.8 PPG.

+ Allen is only 6-6-1 ATS on short rest in his career. He’s 32-23-4 ATS on seven days of rest or more.

  • After an eight-point win over the Browns, Buffalo is 0-3-1 ATS in its last four games. Allen has never failed to cover five straight starts.
  • Favorites of a TD or more are 12-23-1 ATS this season.

+ The biggest advantage in Buffalo? Might just be the Bills' second half. Under Allen, they are 46-26-3 (64%) against the second half spread. Scared to ride Buffalo after they lead at the half? Don’t. The Bills are 29-14-1 (67%) against the second half spread when leading at the half.

Detroit's Struggles on Thanksgiving…

+ Home underdogs are 2-26 SU on Thanksgiving since 2000 and 1-21 SU since '05.

+ Lions are 3-18 SU, 7-14 ATS as a dog on Thanksgiving in Wild Card era (since 1990).

+ Lions have lost 15 consecutive games SU as an underdog on Thanksgiving.

+ Road favs vs Lions on Thanksgiving since 2005: 13-0 SU, 10-3 ATS covering by 9 PPG.

+ Lions last entered Thanksgiving on a 3-game win streak in 2017 (only other time since 2000).

Best of the Rest…

+ Lions have won three straight games SU for the first time since 2017. They haven’t won four straight SU since '16.

+ Home underdogs of a TD or more are 6-0 ATS this season.

+ Jared Goff is 2-0 ATS on short rest with the Lions. He's started one game on Thanksgiving, a 16-14 loss, but covered (+2.5) vs. the Bears last year.

+ Goff is 2-8 ATS in his last 10 starts coming off a double-digit win.

+ The over is 7-3 in the last ten Lions games on Thanksgiving since 2012.

+ Since 2005, teams to win by double-digits the week before Thanksgiving are 18-9 ATS (7-1 ATS since '16).

Giants at Cowboys 
Channel: FOX | 4:30 p.m. ET (THU)
Line: DAL (-10) | O/U: 45.5
Daniel Jones, NYG
2022CareerRoad (Career)
7-3 ATS
7-3 SU
26-21 ATS
19-28 SU
14-7 ATS
7-14 SU
Dak Prescott, DAL
2022CareerHome (Career)
3-2 ATS
3-2 SU
51-41-2 ATS
57-37 SU
25-23-1 ATS
32-17 SU

+ Giants and Cowboys are both 7-3 SU/ATS this season. This is the first matchup of teams with a 70%+ SU/ATS win percentage in November or later since Panthers/Packers back in 2015, and the only other time since '12.

+ Giants are TD underdogs this week. In November or later, 70%+ win pct SU & ATS teams who are TD dogs are 10-7 ATS and 3-0 ATS over the last five years.

+ Giants have played twice on Thanksgiving in the last 20 years: 0-2 SU/ATS

+ Saquon Barkley is currently second in the NFL in rushing yards. He was 25-1 to lead the category before the season started.

  • Giants are 5-1 SU and ATS as underdogs this season, with their only loss in their last game as a dog in Seattle.

+ Daniel Jones is 4-5 SU and 7-2 ATS on short rest. Since 2020, he’s 7-0 ATS on short rest, the most profitable QB in the NFL.

+ The under is 31-11-1 (74%) in Giants games since the start of the 2020 season, the most profitable team to the under.

+ Giants can go over their preseason win total with a win.

The Giants have been under their win total in five straight years and eight of the last nine, including 9-1-1 to the under since 2011. The streak of five to the under is the longest active streak for any over or under win total.

It's Not Just A Lions Issue…

+ Dallas is 1-10 ATS in its last 11 Thanksgiving games.

+ Favorites on Thanksgiving Since 2005:

  • Cowboys: 5-8 ATS
  • All other teams: 28-8 ATS

+ Cowboys have lost five straight 1H ATS on Thanksgiving and they are 1-11 1H ATS on Thanksgiving since 2010.

+ Dak Prescott is just 4-8 ATS on short rest in his career, including 1-4 ATS on Thanksgiving.

Best of the Rest…

+ Over is 8-4 in last 12 Cowboys games on Thanksgiving since 2010.

+ Cowboys as TD or higher favorites on Thanksgiving: 9-1 SU, 7-3 ATS.

+ Cowboys are 10-1 SU, 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games vs. Giants.

+ Unders are 33-19 in NFL divisional games this season. The best start for division unders in the last 20 years.

» Return to the table of contents «

Patriots at Vikings 
Channel: NBC | 8:20 p.m. ET
Line: MIN (-2.5) | O/U: 42.5
Mac Jones, NE
2022CareerRoad (Career)
3-3-1 ATS
4-3 SU
13-11-1 ATS
14-11 SU
6-5-1 ATS
8-4 SU
Kirk Cousins, MIN
2022CareerHome (Career)
4-5-1 ATS
8-2 SU
66-65-2 ATS
68-63-2 SU
30-34-1 ATS
39-26 SU

+ This is the fifth time Bill Belichick has coached on Thanksgiving: 3-1 SU/ATS (3-0 SU/ATS since 2002).

Only been dog on Thanksgiving once: 2000, +6.5 at Lions, lost 34-9

+ Since 2003, Belichick is 29-15-1 ATS on short rest, including 5-4 ATS without Tom Brady in that spot.

+ Belichick has faced seven teams with a 75%+ win pct on short rest over the last decade: 6-1 SU, 5-2 ATS

+ Belichick ATS last 20 years by over/under:

  • Under 40: 35-12-1 ATS (74.5%)
  • Under 42: 53-24-2 ATS (68.8%)
  • Under 45: 93-54-5 ATS (63.3%)
  • 45+: 110-87-5 ATS (55.8%)

+ The Patriots defense has been stout, allowing three points in back-to-back weeks. In the last 20 years, New England is 27-10 ATS the week after allowing fewer than 7 points, including 8-3 ATS since 2018.

+ Patriots unders are 36-21 (63%) on the road dating back to 2016.

+ The Patriots have struggled in the first quarter. They have an NFL-low 15 points in the 1Q all season and the only team with no TDs.

+ Vikings are 3-1 SU/ATS on Thanksgiving over the last 25 years.

Kirk Cousins is 1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS on Thanksgiving in two starts.

  • The first team to have a negative point differential with two or fewer losses at least 10 games into the season? The Vikings.

+ The Vikings are 8-2 SU, but have a negative point differential. In the last 15 years, Belichick has faced 11 teams in November or later who are above .500 SU, but have a negative point differential. Those teams are 1-9 SU and 0-10 ATS against the Patriots.

+ Vikings lost 40-3 in Week 11 against the Cowboys. In the last 20 years, teams to lose by 35 points or more are 72-42-5 ATS (63%). These teams are 48-24-4 ATS (67%) in November or later.

+ Vikings are 8-2 SU entering this game against the Patriots. Teams with a 75%+ win pct are 14-1 SU and 12-3 ATS on Thanksgiving since 2005.

+ Since 2015, Kirk Cousins is 33-17 ATS off a SU loss, the most profitable QB in the NFL in that spot.

+ Kirk Cousins at night: 10-18 SU, 11-17 ATS

  • 3rd-least profitable on ML at night last 20 years (Stafford/Dalton)
  • Ranked 187th of 193 QBs at night ATS

Thursday Night Football Unders:

  • 23-16 since 2020 (6-5 this season).
  • The under is 17-8 in the last 25 games on Thursday Night Football.
  • Thanksgiving night unders are 11-4 (73%), with seven unders cashing in a row.

+ On the other hand, the over has hit on TNF in four of the last five weeks.

Sharp Report

For more information on betting percentages, line moves and ticket counts, access our Action Network odds dashboard.

Biggest Thanksgiving Public Sides
(The most popular spread bets for the Thanksgiving slate)

71% of bets at Cowboys
57% of bets at Lions
54% of bets at Vikings

» Return to the table of contents «

Sharp bet
Patriots +2.5 | Thursday, 8:20 p.m. ET
Bet %
MIN: 54% of Bets
Handle %
NE: 63% of Handle

If you want to make betting decisions for yourself but don’t have the time to collect all the data, check out our NFL PRO Report. This analysis highlights five key betting signals: big money, sharp action, expert projections, expert picks and historical betting systems.

Our model's odds are compared to the consensus odds. We recommend at least a B Grade 3.5% edge before considering a bet based solely on projections.

PRO Systems

Divisional Unders: Late in the season, betting divisional unders have been profitable

Week 12 picks -> PRO Access

PRO Props

Top Props for Thanksgiving: Jared Goff, Detroit Lions
Bet: Under 248.5 pass attempts (-110)

Prop projections and grades for every NFL player in the Action App.

How to use the Action Network's PRO Report to make your betting decisions easier.

» Return to the table of contents «

Thanksgiving Breakdown 

Thanksgiving Betting Notes
Comebacks Are Rare!
Since 2005, teams who lead at the half on Thanksgiving are 30-16-1 ATS in the second half, including 15-6-1 ATS since 2014.
Pays to Fade The D
Dallas and Detroit are a combined 13-21 ATS on Thanksgiving since 2005.
Public Hates Detroit
Since 2005, the public has faded the Lions ATS 11 times on Thanksgiving (spread % of 51% or more on opponent) — DET is 0-11 SU in those games (2-9 ATS).
Favorites Domination
In the last 25 years, favorites of seven points or more on Thanksgiving are 24-2 SU and 22-4 ATS.
Most Profitable QB ATS on Thanksgiving Last 20 Years
2-0 ATS: Josh Allen, Kirk Cousins, Peyton Manning, Big Ben, Tom Brady

Most Profitable Teams ATS on Thanksgiving Last 20 Years

3-0 ATS: Dolphins
2-0 ATS: Bills, Patriots, Steelers

For more content on NFL betting stats and notes check out our recap page on Action Network.

» Return to the table of contents «

Action Audio 

  • The Favorites Podcast: Action Network hosts Chad Millman and Simon hunter offer a cornucopia overflowing with NFL picks this week, as they look to condense the show into a single episode this week.

  • Action Network Podcast: Action Network host Brendan Glasheen is joined by NFL betting experts Gilles Gallant, Nick Giffen and Anthony Dabbundo for a special Thanksgiving week episode of NFL Best Bets. Together they lay out three best bets each for this week's slate. Tune in to hear who the guys are backing and why. We hope you get some great food, great football and maybe even make some money this week!

For more Action Network podcasts, check out our page with a portfolio of ten different options across eight different sports.

» Return to the table of contents «

How would you rate this article?

This site contains commercial content. We may be compensated for the links provided on this page. The content on this page is for informational purposes only. Action Network makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the information given or the outcome of any game or event.