I don’t have a Thanksgiving and football joke for you, so let’s just get to the picks.
For some reason, Detroit’s Thanksgiving matchup is one of my favorite football games to watch every year. Maybe it’s whatever’s in the turkey that makes you sleepy, but it never fails – even this year, which isn’t exactly shaping up to be the prettiest game of the season. We’ve got Andy Dalton lining up opposite Detroit (at least to start) instead of Justin Fields (ribs). And things aren’t exactly going better for Detroit at that position.
Whether it’s Dalton vs. Jared Goff or a battle of the backups, this isn’t exactly a meeting of offensive juggernauts. David Montgomery and D’Andre Swift should still do their thing from an offensive standpoint, but the opener of Thursday’s three-game slate features two offenses that have combined for 32.3 points per game this season while their defenses combine to give up 51.3 points per game on average, with Detroit being slightly worse on both sides of the ball.
Even if Goff does start, obliques are tricky injuries. The Lions don’t have much else to play for this season, so I can understand pushing him out there, but that doesn’t guarantee he’ll do well or that we won’t have a Tim Boyle sighting. Either way, this one is going to be ugly, which will lead to limited offense.
Travis Kelce just had himself a nice showing vs. the Cowboys on Sunday, finishing with a rushing touchdown and 74 yards through the air on five receptions (eight targets). Not the craziest day he’s ever had, but Kelce and the rest of the Chiefs haven’t exactly been themselves this season. Regardless, Kelce’s performance is a great sign for Waller, who has finally woken up.
The Las Vegas tight end has eclipsed the 90-yard mark in two of the Raiders’ last three games, reeling in seven receptions in each of those two contests. Of course, this puts the over (-115) for his receiving yards prop (71.5) on DraftKings Sportsbook in play, but his touchdown prop is the way to go for two reasons. First, and most obvious, the difference in value. Second, Waller has all this momentum, but he hasn’t scored a touchdown since Oct. 4. He and Derek Carr are connecting with consistency again, so it’s only a matter of time before Vegas’ quarterback finds his tight end again.
The Bills are out to make a statement after their Week 11 mess vs. the Colts, much like they were in Week 10 vs. the Jets after only scoring six points in Jacksonville. The difference between this matchup and Buffalo’s last bounce-back opportunity is the defense needs to turn things around, too. Even if that weren’t the case, as much as Trevor Siemian has been a solid value option for fantasy, he can’t go blow for blow with Josh Allen — especially if Alvin Kamara remains sidelined.
But as much as I like the Bills to cover in this one, that doesn’t mean Allen will play mistake-free football. He’s thrown an interception in each of Buffalo’s last three games and was throwing one every other game before this recent stretch. The Saints are middle of the pack in pass DVOA (14th), but they also have 11 picks through 10 games. Oddly enough, they haven’t forced a turnover through the air since Week 8, so it would seem the Saints are due for one given they logged at least one interception every week before their Week 6 bye.
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