Scott’s Four NFL Picks: Week 12 Thanksgiving Special

By Scott Kacsmar

The NFL has a special Week 12 schedule for the holidays, so we will do something different too with NFL picks just for the four games on Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Every game is a divisional matchup, so these teams should know each other well to help with the short week of preparation. We also have a quarterback change with the Jets and a quarterback injury to monitor with Geno Smith for the Seahawks.

Each week, we share some NFL picks that we are including in our bets for the week. These can be prop picks, spreads, totals, alternate lines, money lines, same-game parlays, etc. We like to think outside the box instead of just telling you Dallas beating the Commanders as a double-digit favorite is a good pick. You can play the picks separately or parlay your favorite choices together.

1. Packers-Lions: Detroit Sweep Parlay

Detroit is trying to beat Green Bay for the fifth time in a row, something the Lions have not done since an 11-game winning streak against the Packers way back in 1949-54. They already have a 34-20 win in Lambeau this year, and we have a 5-leg parlay for how the Lions can do it again this Thursday at home. The Lions are a 7.5-point favorite with a total of 46.5 points.

  • Sam LaPorta 40+ Receiving Yards
  • David Montgomery 50+ Rushing Yards
  • Jahmyr Gibbs 25+ Rushing Yards
  • Jahmyr Gibbs 2+ Receptions
  • Detroit ML

Rookie tight end Sam LaPorta has been having a great season, but he was held to 3 catches for 18 yards against the Bears, easily his least productive game of the season. LaPorta had at least 36 yards in every other game this season, including 56 yards on 4 catches in Week 4 against Green Bay.

The Packers usually do a solid job of holding down wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown, so look for Jared Goff to get his tight end more heavily involved this week. He should be back to clearing 40 yards for the Lions.

Detroit also ran the ball extremely well against the Packers in Week 4. David Montgomery had his season highs with 32 carries for 121 yards in that game. Since then, the Lions have figured out better ways to utilize Montgomery and rookie Jahmyr Gibbs together.

  • Montgomery has rushed for at least 67 yards in every game this season except for the Tampa Bay game he left injured early with 14 yards.
  • Gibbs is playing more snaps now and has rushed for at least 25 yards in 7-of-8 games played this year.
  • Gibbs has also caught at least 2 passes in 7-of-8 games, including 4 catches against the Packers in Week 4.

You could throw in a Montgomery touchdown to boost the odds to +422. He has scored at least one in every game he’s finished this year, and he had 3 scores in Green Bay last time.

Throw all the offensive stats together for Detroit, consider the way its defense has manhandled the Packers since last year, and this looks like a fun afternoon for Lions fans who get to enjoy seeing their team move to 9-2. Hopefully, they will come out and play better in the first half after that serious scare against Chicago last week.

Scott’s NFL Pick: Same Game Parlay – Sam LaPorta 40+ Receiving Yards & David Montgomery 50+ Rushing Yards & Jahmyr Gibbs 25+ Rushing Yards & Jahmyr Gibbs 2+ Receptions & Detroit ML (+261 at FanDuel)

2. Commanders-Cowboys: Dak Is Rolling

Say what you will about Dallas when it faces a contender, but the Cowboys are excellent at dominating bad teams. Dallas has now won six games by at least 20 points this season. The only other teams in the Super Bowl era to do that in their first 10 games are the 2007 Patriots (8 games) and 1999 Rams (6 games). Both of those teams reached the Super Bowl and their quarterbacks won MVP that year.

Dak Prescott is gaining ground in the muddled MVP race. He has been on a hot streak and now he gets a Washington team he has owned in his career (9-2 record with 19 touchdowns to 4 interceptions) as a 10.5-point home favorite.

Here is a 3-leg parlay for the quarterbacks in this game:

  • Sam Howell Over 39.5 Pass Attempts
  • Sam Howell Over 0.5 Passes Intercepted
  • Dak Prescot Over 1.5 Passing Touchdowns

On Prescott, he has thrown multiple touchdowns in 4-of-5 home games against Washington in his career, and more importantly, he has done it in four straight games. He has also done it in 3-of-4 home games this season.

The Commanders allow a league-high 27.7 points per game, and no defense has allowed more touchdown passes (24) than Washington. Dak should have no problem throwing at least a pair of scores in this game.

On the other side, all Washington does is throw the ball this year. Sam Howell’s 442 pass attempts are 60 more than the next closest quarterback, and he’s also taken 13 more sacks than anyone else.

Between compensating for a shaky offensive line and the No. 32 scoring defense, Howell is often left throwing down after down on a weekly basis for this team. He has attempted at least 42 passes in five straight games. He is 1-6 when he hits 40 attempts this year compared to 3-1 when he is under 40 passes. That’s the game script doing the work, and as a big favorite in this one, you can expect Howell to have to throw a lot to keep up with the No. 2 scoring team on the road.

Howell has also been intercepted in 7-of-11 games this year, including last week against the Giants where he threw 3 interceptions. He is tied for the league lead with 12 picks.

The Cowboys have not been as dominant with the takeaways this year after leading the league the previous two seasons. Some of that is missing corner Trevon Diggs (ACL). But second-year corner DaRon Bland is making up for that with 6 interceptions, including 4 touchdown returns. He just needs one more to set a single-season record, and maybe Howell can give it to him for Thanksgiving.

Scott’s NFL Pick: Same Game Parlay – Sam Howell Over 39.5 Pass Attempts & Sam Howell Over 0.5 Passes Intercepted & Dak Prescott Over 1.5 Passing Touchdowns (+280 at Caesars Sportsbook)

3. 49ers-Seahawks: Kings of the NFC West

Last season, the 49ers swept the Seahawks 3-0, including a 41-23 win in the wild-card round. This is a battle for first place in the NFC West with the 49ers (7-3) a game ahead of the Seahawks (6-4), but it sure feels like a bigger gap than that between these teams.

We have a 3-leg parlay for this game with a script for the 49ers taking control of the division race against a team with injuries at quarterback and running back (Kenneth Walker):

  • Chrisitan McCaffrey Anytime Touchdown Scorer
  • George Kittle 40+ Receiving Yards
  • 49ers -7

At this point, the Christian McCaffrey touchdown is almost automatic. His 17-game streak with one snapped, but he just started a new one after getting the first score against Tampa Bay on Sunday. The Seahawks are mediocre at best at defending running backs, and McCaffrey is really matchup-proof with his ability to score in a variety of ways. That is the safest leg here.

George Kittle has been on a hot streak with 89, 116, 149, and 78 yards in his last four games. He has also scored touchdowns in back-to-back games, but we’ll just keep it conservative with a solid 40-yard night at a minimum. In case you forgot, Kittle’s last two trips to Seattle have produced games with 93 and 181 yards. He also scored 2 touchdowns in each game.

Finally, we’ll trust one of the best scoring teams in the league and the No. 1 scoring defense to handle a Seattle offense that has not looked strong for the last month or longer. In fact, the gap between these teams only seems to have grown as Brock Purdy is playing better this year while Geno Smith has regressed some in this offense.

Throw in a triceps injury for Geno this week and it’s not looking optimistic. He struggled to put points on the board against San Francisco three times last year, and every loss was by at least 8 points. We like the 49ers to do that again as this is not a team that wins by the skin of its teeth.

Scott’s NFL Pick: Same Game Parlay – Christian McCaffrey Anytime Touchdown Scorer & George Kittle 40+ Receiving Yards & 49ers -7 (+261 at FanDuel)

4. Dolphins-Jets: Can the Jets Get a Black Friday Sale on a Quarterback?

The NFL went all out in the advertising department for this game, the first to ever be played on Black Friday for the league. Little did they know they would be hyping up Tim Boyle and the imploding Jets against the Dolphins. This was supposed to be another Aaron Rodgers spot, but we know what happened there.

The Jets finally benched Zach Wilson, but at 4-6, it may have been too late. It also may end up worse as journeyman Tim Boyle is not the answer either for Robert Saleh’s team.

We have a Spread/Total Points double-pick to take advantage of the Jets’ offensive ineptitude and what may be an improving defense for the Dolphins:

  • Dolphins -7.5
  • Under 41.5

The last time we saw something weird like an NFL game on a Friday afternoon, it was the 2020 Steelers beating the Ravens 19-14 on a Wednesday afternoon during the pandemic.

With the way the island games have gone this year, this under should have no problem hitting. We know the Jets have failed to crack 14 points in the last 4 games, and adding a quarterback who has thrown an interception on 7.5% of his NFL attempts is not going to solve the inability to run or produce points in this passing game. Also, Jalen Ramsey is back for the Dolphins, and he should have an impact in defending Garrett Wilson, the only real threat in this passing offense.

While still ranking No. 1 in offense, Miami has not been that explosive or efficient as of late either. The Dolphins have been held under 21 points in 3-of-4 games going into Friday. The Jets still have a solid defense that can make things difficult on this team. Miami has not scored more than 24 points on the road since Week 1.

Whether it’s 20-6 or 21-13 or somehow a decent watch at 24-16, this one should not go over, and the Dolphins should be able to cover.

In the end, we’ve posted “four picks” here, but it really is 13 picks spread out over four games. Mix and match what you like for a parlay if you want, and remember to leave some room for the weekend when we return Friday with more picks for Sunday and Monday games.

Scott’s NFL Pick: Spread/Total Points Double – Dolphins -7.5 & Under 41.5 Points (+220 at FanDuel)

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