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Thanksgiving Day - By: Pete Henson

Thanksgiving. The holiday everyone is trying to forget about by playing Christmas music the second the weather drops below 50 degrees. Personally, I think this has been a cruel ploy by Mariah Carey to bolster her Christmas album streaming numbers. Big Christmas does NOT want Thanksgiving to continue to be celebrated, and I think it’s time we all address what is going on here. I, for one, simply will not stand for it. Also, its hard to beat a giant feast the day after the biggest drink holiday in the world on Thanksgiving Eve. Thanksgiving Day is one filled with beautiful, life-long traditions that bring everyone together. You start your day off with a turkey bowl football game with your long time, washed up friends where you drink 10-12 Kennys before stepping on the field. Others opt for a more relaxed yet confusing route, by watching the Macy’s day parade with family but this at least gives you plenty of time to drink some Kennys before dinner. Next, you have the slate of NFL games, where you can watch the Lions, and hopefully Cowboys, get destroyed while you enjoy a couple refreshing Kennys. Somewhere along the way, you inevitably find yourself in an argument with that one uncle who loves interjecting his opinions into the conversation without a single person asking. Finally, you have the main event of Thanksgiving dinner. When you’re stuffing your face with a humongous Thanksgiving feast, nothing pairs better than a Kenwood Beer. To end the night the right way, you can always throw on a Thanksgiving classic such as Pieces of April, Tadpole, The Ice Storm or Hannah and her sisters, while sipping on a nice, cold Kenny as a night cap. As I alluded to before, the NFL always has a great* slate of games during Thanksgiving Day. As if you hadn’t disappointed your mom enough with your Thanksgiving Eve performance or the early morning festivities, why not double down and bet the house on the NFL games to really hammer it home? Besides, there is only so much you can talk about with your family before opting out and sitting on the couch to watch 6 straight hours of football. Let’s get to the picks. **Disclaimer: I am the worst sports gambler in the world. I have been known to be faded heavily and others have told me this has brought them great success. Please continue cautiously** Detroit Lions vs. Chicago Bears (-3.5) (o/u 41.5) I hope the food smells good because this first game stinks out loud. Who in their right minds wants to watch Tim Boyle vs. Andy Dalton UNLESS they have money on the game? Even the people in Detroit aren’t tuning in to have one Thanksgiving in peace, especially after their comeback last week that almost led to their first win of the year. The Bears might have to start Andy Dalton and their offense is still playing poorly, even with the return of David Montgomery. This is tough one to choose, because both teams are horrible, but they tend to keep the games close. I trust Andy Dalton about as far as he can throw a football nowadays, but he is matched up against a dude named Tim Boyle. If both teams can establish the run and score some early points, it may turn into a game with only 15 punts collectively. I would give the edge to the Bears here because they are coming off a tough loss, their defense is starting to come alive, and their starting quarterback isn’t Tim Boyle. OK defenses and bad offenses smell like an under to me. Picks: Bears (-3.5) and the under (41.5) Las Vegas Raiders vs. Dallas Cowboys (-7) (o/u 51)

Both these teams are coming off a bad loss where they failed to score many points. Both defenses are susceptible to giving up a ton of points. Both quarterbacks have been struggling as of late. Both fan bases love wearing jorts. These are all common themes in this Thanksgiving match up, but the Cowboys are heavily favorited for good reason. The Raiders offense hasn’t score more than 16 points in the last three weeks against bad defenses and the Cowboys really underperformed on Sunday vs. the Chiefs. While it wouldn’t shock me if the Raiders came out strong in this game, especially with everyone already writing them off, it feels like the chalk is the way to go here. The Cowboys always play tough at home. Although it pains me to say it, I think this one is a blowout and the over hits. Picks: Cowboys (-7) and the over (51)

New Orleans Saints vs. Buffalo Bills (-4) (o/u 46.5)

This matchup is one between some of the most interesting fans in football. You have the crybaby Saints fans who love nothing more than Marches against Goodell and then the beautiful people of Buffalo, who never saw a table that they didn’t want to pile drive in half. This tailgate would be one of the better scenes of the year. Both teams are trending in the wrong direction but at least the Saints have an excuse, playing with a backup quarterback. Josh Allen looked unstoppable earlier this year, but their lack of a ground attack is hurting the offense a whole. Trevor Siemian is not a good QB by any means, but he has been able to string together some solid games, aside from last week’s beating. Both defenses have been gashed the week prior and I think that trend continues here. I think the Bills are a better team, playing way below their potential, and the Saints are pretty banged up at the moment. I would never bet against a guy with a rocket arm for a guy with a candy arm. Picks: Bills (-4) and the over (46.5)

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