The Houston Texans will be spending their holiday on the road as they take on the Detroit Lions on Thanksgiving Day. This is the first time in league history that the Texans have played on Thanksgiving, while the Lions are a common fixture.
The Texans (3-7) are coming into Thursday’s game off of an impressive 27-20 victory at home over the New England Patriots. Star quarterback Deshaun Watson dominated New England’s defense, completing 75.7 percent of his passes for 344 yards and two touchdowns. Watson also had a rushing touchdown and 36 yards on the ground. Defensively, the Texans did a great job of stopping the run, holding the Patriots to only 86 rushing yards. However, they struggled once again through the air, allowing Patriots quarterback Cam Newton to throw for 365 yards and a touchdown.
As for the Lions (4-6), they are looking to rebound from a 20-0 shutout road loss to the Carolina Panthers. The Lions struggled on both sides of the ball as they were missing playmakers on offense. Veteran quarterback Matt Stafford was 18-of-33 for 178 yards and sacked five times. Meanwhile, Detroit’s running was non-existent as Adrian Peterson was their leading rusher with 18 yards on seven carries. Overall, the Lions ran 40 yards on Sunday. They are hoping to get rookie running back D’Andre Swift, who missed the game with a concussion.
Date: Thursday, Nov. 26
Time: 12:30 p.m. ET
Notable Statistical rankings (Football Outsiders)
Fantasy football start/sit advice
Deshaun Watson, QB, $7,400
Anytime you talk about Houston Texans players in fantasy football, the first name that comes up is Deshaun Watson. The dynamic-dual threat quarterback has played well this season, despite Houston being four games under .500. This season, the former Clemson quarterback is completing 68.1 percent of his passes for 2,539 yards, 18 touchdowns, and five interceptions.
With those types of stats, it is not surprising to see Watson listed as a weekly top-10 fantasy play at quarterback. On Thursday, he is going up a Lions’ defense that is giving up 270 passing yards per game and 19.34 fantasy points to opposing QBs. We saw what P.J. Walker just did to this defense through the air in Week 11. Just imagine what Watson can do with Will Fuller V and Brandin Cooks.
Will Fuller V, WR, $6,400
If you are lucky to have Watson on your fantasy team or in NFL DFS, you are likely stacking him with the speedy Will Fuller. The former Notre Dame standout has stayed healthy this season, which is music to the ears of Texans fans and fantasy football managers everywhere.
Through 11 weeks, Fuller has 41 receptions (60 targets) for 628 yards and six touchdowns. Last week against the Patriots, Fuller was the team’s third-leading receiver with six receptions (eight targets) for 80 yards. It was the second-straight week that Fuller was targeted eight times and did not score a touchdown. However, his fortunes should change this week against the Lions, who have allowed eight touchdowns to wideouts this season. Do not overthink this decision. Fuller is the perfect WR2 to kick off Week 12.
Matthew Stafford, QB, $5,800
After a less than stellar performance against the Panthers in Week 11, Matthew Stafford gets a much more favorable matchup on Thanksgiving Day. This season, the Texans’ pass defense has struggled, giving up a ton of big plays and yards.
Last week, Houston allowed Cam Newton to throw for over 300 yards. Then a couple of weeks prior, the Texans’ defense got lit up by rookie quarterback Jake Luton for 304 yards and a touchdown. That being said, Stafford is a solid top-15 play this week.
Marvin Jones Jr., WR, $5,500
With Kenny Golladay out for the foreseeable future with a hip injury, the Lions needed somebody to step up in his place. That someone was veteran wideout Marvin Jones Jr. Jones had another solid performance in Week 11, recording four receptions (six targets) for 51 yards. This month, the 30-year-old receiver has been targeted 21 times, to go along with 14 receptions for 178 yards and four touchdowns. Jones will be looking to get back into the touchdown column on Thanksgiving against a Houston defense that is allowing 7.8 yards per pass attempt.