NFL Week 12, Part 1: Happy Thanksgiving! (In an Unhappy Year)

DeShaun Watson and the Texans will face the Lions on Thanksgiving. Both teams are in the midst of disappointing seasons.

2020 has been a rough one, no doubt. The good news is, it’s almost over, and the better news is, with the Ravens and Steelers being postponed to Sunday, we get our DraftAmerica-style dream of our first Thanksgiving with only two games — the way it should be — since the Paul Tagliabue days of 2005. So let’s take a look at the two games today:

 

Season:    5-8

 

Houston (-3) at Detroit

For the second time ever these clubs will meet up on Thanksgiving, with the Texans prevailing in OT in 2012. It’s a matchup of former Patriots defensive coordinators, Romeo Crennel and Matt Patricia. Scary to think the Lions enter Thanksgiving with the best record among the four teams playing today, but it feels like the Texans may have a little momentum now with DeShaun Watson and Co. finally putting it together against someone other than the Jaguars in last week’s win over the Patriots. Another question is whether this could be Matt Patricia’s swan song if the Lions lose? It feels like the Texans could finish a little stronger after their dismal start, so I’ll go with the road favorites over a Lions team that is 4-15 on Turkey Day in the 21st Century. Pick: Texans.

Washington at Dallas (-3)

This one is tough. My heart is with the Cowboys and I see them as a sleeper (is there such thing though?) to win this monstrosity of a division. But the Football Team brings a strong defense, one that dominated Andy Dalton before knocking him out in these teams’ first matchup last month. Alex Smith has been one of the great stories of this bizarre year, and this is an opportunity for him to keep up his strong play of late on a national stage. If nothing else this game should come down to the wire, so I’ll take the points. Pick: Washington.

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