Thanksgiving Thursday! #WeAreTexans @ #OnePride, #WashingtonFootball @ #DallasCowboys

I’ll admit this has been a rough week and one that’s left me wondering whether to change things up on here with regards to tips on games, I’m on a terrible run and it makes sense that I have a week or so off, or just a change of tact with regards to what I’m doing with it. I haven’t been able to hit anything recently, even Monday night which I didn’t preview I had a bet on Josh Reynolds o3.5 receptions which has hit in 3 games in a row, but he finished on 3. That kind of shit is typical of my betting in recent weeks and if anyone does still follow them I’m costing people money, it’s not good.

Then you’ve got the Burrow incident and the fallout from that, I’ll still watch the Bengals but it will keep so little of my attention with Ryan Finley playing QB, he’s not NFL standard and I doubt we’ll reach double digits in games with him in there, so there’s that small respite gone from my life as well now. – Hopefully the surgery goes well for Burrow and he’s there for week 1 next year when we’ve got Penei Sewell (picked at 3 next April) at LT and Jonah at RT for the next decade of so. The out-pouring of “We told you so” aimed at the coaching staff and front office was hugely predictable and he did get a lot of punishment in the opening weeks of the season, but the line has actually been pretty good in recent weeks despite it being different players every week as someone gets injured seemingly every game.

The incident itself could have happened to any QB on any team in the league it was a freak injury. Of course the front office can be criticised and Bengals fans love doing that, but they brought in Quinton Spain who’s looked good, Hakeem Adeniji is showing signs of promise as a late round rookie. The coaching can be criticised for the amount of times they ask Burrow to throw but with Mixon out for the last month the run game isn’t as effective and he’s going to be asked to do more, they would have comfortably won that game on Sunday had it not been for the injury, they were by far the better team.

Burrow to Higgins is going to be a great connection going forward.

Oh dear, Steelers v Ravens postponed until Sunday, more ammo for fans and players to cry about being treated badly. In this instance I have to agree though. The 49ers were forced to play while massively under-manned vs the Packers, I’m surprised they’ve moved this one to Sunday.

The main difference, I guess is that the 49ers only lost players due to “false positives” while these are confirmed positives for the Ravens, so the virus is definitely circulating there, and to protect everyone it’s been delayed while tests are conducted with close contacts to see whether they’re positive or not. Oh, and a more cynical view, they’ve got 2 games already, this was just the cheery on top of the thanksgiving turkey so moving it doesn’t affect viewing too much.

Or the NFL just hate the Steelers are moving their bye week earlier in the year and giving them a piss easy schedule. Either way. It’s now Sunday afternoon. Dry those tears folks, mine have just about dried from last weekend, I’m sure you’ll be fine in the long run.

I’ll be backing the Skybet treble, looks good at the odds, and William Hill have 2/1 on Texans and Cowboys winning which I’m on as well.

(3-7) Texans -3 @ Lions (4-6): 51.5

  • Both teams are 3-7 ATS this season
  • Texans – 4-6 O-U with 6 one-score games
  • Lions 6-4 with 5 one-score games

Texans

Despite the records the Texans are the better team here, they’re playing better and have the in-form QB. Deshaun Watson has been very good over the last month while Matthew Stafford is carrying an injury and has depleted weapons.

Watson has 11 TDs and 0 INTs in their last 5 games, with an average passer rating of 75 over that span, he’s also picked up his rushing which had been lacking before Bill O’Brien was removed, averaging around 37 yards per game on the ground and scored his second rushing TD of the season last week against the Patriots. He will be without Randall Cobb and Kenny Stills tonight, but they’re not the essential pieces of the passing offense anyway.

Will Fuller and Brandin Cooks are the splash guys for the team. Both have a longest reception like of 25.5 for tonight, Both have gone over that in 4 games this year, Fuller has 708 and 6 TDs on the season with 6,5,5 receptions in the last 3 games, while Cooks is on 634 and 3 scores this year, 4,6,3 in the last three. Without Cobb it should be Keke Coutee in the slot, he’s one I was high on last year before falling out of favour with BO’B. He had double digit receptions in games so is capable of it, and found the endzone in relief of Cobb last week finishing on just 2 receptions for 10 yards and a score.

The tight ends Jordan Akins and Darren Fells could see more of the ball without Cobb there, as a general rule Akins is the possession guy while Fells scores more, had 5 for 83 last week, just 1 TD to Fells’ 3, but they’ve given Pharaoh Brown a TD as well recently, which muddies things a little.

The run game isn’t much to talk about Duke Johnson is the de facto RB1 but he’s really not very good averaging under 3 yards per carry on the ground and worse than that since David Johnson went out injured. CJ Prosise could be a sneaky one to look at in the passing game from the backfield (the old Duke role) He has a couple of catches for 8 yards last week, but his snaps increased from 4% to 25% last week with DJ dropping to 77%. He can’t be much worse than Johnson and his receiving line of 6.5 is tempting, or 19.5 rushing and receiving…

Defensively they’re not great… 31st vs the run, 24th vs the pass according to DVOA. JJ Watt is always able to get pressure at important times though and the Lions OL isn’t exactly stellar.

dairylandexpress.com

Lions

What a mess for the Lions this week. After putting up a goose egg against the almighty Panthers defense last week they’re even weaker on paper for this one, Golladay and Amendola miss out again, it looked like Swift might make it, but he’s been ruled out, as well as Hand and Okudah arguably their two best CBs. It’s not good for them.

Matthew Stafford is playing, as he’s hardcore, but he looked like he was badly hampered with a torn ligament in the thumb of his throwing hand last week and having no-one to throw to this week won’t help. The Swift injury is most annoying for me as I’ve got shares in fantasy and he looked great when given the start in the last game he played.

Adrian Peterson will take the RB1 status against a poor rush defense and should put up the yards despite being older than everyone bar Frank Gore on offense. Kerryon Johnson will chip in with a few carries/receptions, but it’s just not exciting and frankly a waste of a matchup. Last week Peterson had 7 for 18 yards, Johnson 6 for 17 on the ground, Kerryon added 2 catches for 21.

Marvin Jones is the de facto main man in the passing game once more, he isn’t bad at all, but does better with Golladay in the lineup, he and TJ Hockenson both had 4 receptions last week, and had over 50 yards apiece. Marvin Hall is the downfield threat in general, had a massive long reception of 6 yards last week though, and Quintez Cephus was thought to have been involved more early on. Mo Sanu is one to probably keep an eye on in the Amendola role, he played 27% of snaps last week with no catch, but you’ve got to think he’ll have a bigger role in this one. 11/1 at Unibet, and 8/1 at PP isn’t terrible as a longshot.

Hockenson has scored in 5 games this season, but I can’t take under 2/1 on him despite a probable increased role. Jesse James has an annoying habit of occasionally doing something as well.

Summary

Lions are 4-14 on Thanksgiving since 2001.
The Texans are unbeaten on Thanksgiving
Texans have only scored in 4 1st quarters, averaging 3.1 pts
Lions have scored in 1st quarters – 6.2 average
The Lions have won 3 of 4 games when they’ve led at the half
Texans have conceded every quarter in 6 games, Lions have scored every qtr in 4.

The stats say that the Lions win the first quarter – You can get Lions -3.5 at 3.40 which is a little tempting.

If the Lions get a lead (they frequently give up 14 pt leads) then back the Texans.

I can’t see how the Lions get the win here to be honest, they’re hugely beaten up and the Texans offense is clicking. They are weak defending the run, but I don’t think Peterson of Johnson will make them pay.

  • Texans -3
  • CJ Prosise o6.5 rec. yards – 1.83 (365)

(3-7) Washington FT +3 @ Cowboys (3-7): 46

The NFC East. It’s not good quality, but at least it’s interesting, each team has 3 wins and one of them will get to host a playoff game, such are the rules of the sport. Crazy shit.

Washington Football team

Washington were lucky to win against the Bengals at the weekend, the game changing utterly after the injury. Before that they had been out-gained by double, after that they only allowed 17 yards against them and put up 199 of their own, mainly on the ground with Antonio Gibson.

It’s fairly remarkable that Alex Smith is playing at all after the hideous injury he suffered, but here he is, and he’s doing well enough, he put up a ton of yards, yet only thrown 2 TDs and 4 INTs, his QBR on the season is 46. So I can’t say he’s playing well.

He does have seemingly one of the best receivers in the game in Terry McLaurin who has no right to put up the yards he does on such a poor offense, yet he comes into this one with at least 61 yards in all but one game this season and 90 with a TD in the first matchup between these two. He’s pretty much all of their passing attack, they really don’t have a whole lot outside of him, probably just a lot more JD McKissic catching from the backfield, if they’re trailing he’ll add to his 33 targets in 3 games after a quiet recieving game in the second half stroll at the weekend. Cam Sim, Steven Sims and Isaiah Wright are all people who apparently play football. (I know Steven Sims at least, quick little fucker) – Logan Thomas maybe the 2nd or 3rd option in the team? Not worth mentioning really.

Antonio Gibson is a big bright spot for the season though, despite a seemingly quiet start to the season he’s sitting on 8 rushing TDs, with at least one in each of his last 4 and 287 yards over that span. He’s really come on and is very effective in the redzone. McKissic is the pass catcher, basically more of a slot receiver. Against the 25th run defense they should do fairly well.

The defense is the strength of this team though, one of the better pass rushes in the league with a ton of first round picks including the #2 overall Chase Young gets great pressure up front and the secondary, Ronald Darby especially are playing very well, it’s proving to be a good mix with them ranked 4th vs. the Pass and 13th against the run.

Cowboys

The Cowboys impressed last week coming off their bye with a win in Minnesota. The offensive line has been letting them down but did well against a poor pass rush there, giving half that protection in this one is probably the key to the game.

Andy Dalton suffered a brutal concussion in the first game between these two, it put him out for 3 weeks and the Cowboys probably thought that was the end of their season, for the second time, but such is the ineptitude of the NFC East they find themselves in the hunt still. They showed no fight at all after Dalton got smacked, I’m hoping they show more enthusiasm for their team mates in this one. He played well last week and has always been adequate, an 86 QBR last week with over 200 yards, 3 TDs.

The run game looked better too, Zeke has been poor this year with a ton of fumbles, they really need him back to form to get another 3 wins or so to win the division. He had his first 100 yard game of the season and bagged his second receiving TD of the year. Tony Pollard looks really good in his spells stepping in as well.

The receiving corps should be very good, Amari Cooper has had some great seasons, Michael Gallup looked good last year, but CeeDee Lamb is the one catching the eye in his rookie year, he had a ton of highlight catches in college and he did the same last week with a brilliant catch for a TD. None of them will get a good matchup per se, but all are capable of getting the ball should it be thrown their way. Dalton Schultz scored last week as well, he’s averaged 4 receptions per game over the season to add a little more to their game.

The defense has been… “poor” – It’s been bloody terrible this season but showed signs of life last week. It is apparently a tough system to learn and maybe this is them settling into it? Either way they were a little better last week. Officially it’s 22nd vs the pass, 25th vs the run.

Summary

This game will be won up front, if the Cowboys OL can stop Washington getting through to Dalton then the Cowboys should win. If not and it’s back to constant QB hits then it’s going to be a long night for Dallas.

The talent disparity on offense is significant in Dallas’ way and not quite off-set by the defensive difference on the other side of the ball.

It’s Dallas at home on Thanksigiving, I’ll take them covering the three.

The anytime prices are terrible on this game so nothing from me there, although Gibson at Evens isn’t bad given the streak he’s on.

  • Cowboys -2.5 – 1.83 (365)
  • JD McKissic o3.5 receptions – 1.76 (Skybet)
  • Terry McLaurin o71.5 rec. yards – 1.83 (Bet365)

(10-0) Steelers -4 @ Ravens (6-4): 45

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