The expansion of legal sports betting across the U.S. will give more football bettors an extra helping of something to be thankful for than ever before. That will make the Thanksgiving matchups between the Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions, Las Vegas Raiders and Dallas Cowboys, and Buffalo Bills and New Orleans Saints will be some of the most legally wagered-on regular-season NFL games in history, according to TheLines.com, which tracks odds in the U.S. regulated sports betting market.
Playing their traditional Thanksgiving Day home roles, the struggling Lions enter the week as 3.5-point underdogs to the NFC North rival Bears, according to a consensus of that nation’s largest legal online sportsbooks — including DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, BetRivers, Caesars, and PointsBet. Meanwhile, the Cowboys are 7-point favorites to the Raiders. The holiday finale puts the Bills as 4.5-point road favorites over the New Orleans Saints.
In their long history as Thanksgiving hosts, the Lions are 37-42-2 straight-up on the holiday, including 4-8 since 2009. Meanwhile, the Cowboys have gone 31-21-1 straight-up on Thanksgiving and only 5-7 since 2009. The Lions are 6-6 against the spread over their last 12 Thanksgiving Day matchups, failing to cover last year in a 41-25 loss to the Houston Texans. The Cowboys are 2-10 ATS over their last 12 Thanksgiving games, including a 41-16 loss in 2020 to the Washington Football Team.
Both the Bills and Saints last appeared on Thanksgiving in 2019. On Thanksgiving, the Saints are 3-0 straight-up all-time, including a narrow cover in a 26-18 win over the Atlanta Falcons in 2019. Meanwhile, the Bills have gone 4-4-1 in Thanksgiving games, including covering in a 26-15 win over the Cowboys in 2019.
“Like Thursday night games, a short week to prepare can make Thanksgiving games difficult to predict,” said Brett Collson, lead analyst for TheLines.com. “But the NFL has a captive audience on the holiday, which means there should be intense interest in all three games regardless of the records of each participating team.”
The consensus point spreads for Week 12 games, as of Monday, Nov. 22:
- Chicago Bears (-3.5) at Detroit Lions; over/under 42
- Las Vegas Raiders at Dallas Cowboys (-7); over/under 50.5
- Buffalo Bills (-4.5) at New Orleans Saints; over/under 46.5
- Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals (-4.5); over/under 45.5
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-2.5) at Indianapolis Colts; over/under 51
- Carolina Panthers (-1) at Miami Dolphins; over/under 42.5
- Tennessee Titans at New England Patriots (-5.5); over/under 44.5
- Philadelphia Eagles (-3.5) at New York Giants; over/under 46.5
- Atlanta Falcons (-1) at Jacksonville Jaguars; over/under 47
- New York Jets at Houston Texans (-2.5); over/under 44
- Los Angeles Chargers (-2) at Denver Broncos; over/under 48.5
- Los Angeles Rams at Green Bay Packers (-1.5); over/under 49.5
- Minnesota Vikings at San Francisco 49ers (-2.5); over/under 48.5
- Cleveland Browns at Baltimore Ravens (-4.5); over/under 46.5
- Seattle Seahawks (-1.5) at Washington Football Team; over/under 46
To access updated lines and a betting guide for every NFL team, visit www.thelines.com/betting/nfl. To access Week 12 odds, visit www.thelines.com/nfl-week-12-odds-2021/.