When the NFL schedule first came out, the Thanksgiving night game between the Buffalo Bills and New Orleans Saints looked like a gem. Buffalo was one of the early Super Bowl favorites and New Orleans, with Sean Payton on the sidelines and the ball in Alvin Kamara’s hands, was trying to hang on to a piece of the NFL’s upper echelon.
It hasn’t quite worked out that way, as the Bills come in at 6-4, losers of three of their past five after giving up 264 rushing yards in a 41-15 home loss to the Colts. The Saints (5-5) are on the three-game losing streak and again could be without Kamara and RT Ryan Ramczyk.
The disparity at quarterback is stark, with Josh Allen going up against Trevor Siemien. We also should see the Bills play with more urgency now that the Patriots have taken over first place in the AFC East.
The pick: Bills, -5.5.
DETROIT LIONS (+3.5) over Chicago Bears
I’d rather use this space to rip the NFL for making us watch Lions-Bears on Thanksgiving, but you’re here for a selection. Though the Lions are 0-9-1, they are 6-4 against the spread. D’Andre Swift has run for 130 and 136 yards the past two weeks against the Steelers and Browns, and now takes aim at a Bears defense that is missing some of its top players.
Las Vegas Raiders (-7.5) over DALLAS COWBOYS
While Dallas is hopeful of getting CeeDee Lamb back from concussion protocol, Amari Cooper is still out due to COVID. The Raiders have lost three in a row and scored 16, 14 and 13 points in those games, but this is their biggest underdog spot of the season. They won outright +5 at Denver and +5.5 at Pittsburgh.
Last week: 9-6 overall, 2-1 Best Bets.