Pats-Jets Matchup Highlights Thanksgiving Day NFL Games

By: Matty Simo | Monday, November 19, 2012

Houston Texans at Detroit Lions
NFL Betting Preview
11/22/2012 at 12:30 p.m. (ET)
Opening Lines: Houston -3, O/U 48½
(click for latest NFL odds)
Television: CBS

Houston Texans: The Texans (9-1 straight-up, 7-3 against the spread) dodged a bullet last week at home and might be hard-pressed to get a tougher challenge on the road this Thanksgiving Day. Houston needed overtime to knock off Jacksonville 43-37 behind a game-winning 48-yard touchdown catch from wide receiver Andre Johnson (14 catches for a career-high 273 yards) but still failed to deliver as a 15-point favorite. Quarterback Matt Schaub also threw for a career-high 527 yards, which tied for the second-highest total in NFL history, and five touchdowns. Schaub and Johnson will now get to feast on Detroit’s secondary that was burned for a 22-yard TD pass from Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers in the final two minutes to win that game. Texans RB Arian Foster carried the ball 28 times for 77 yards in the win and should be more involved against the Lions as well.

Detroit Lions: Detroit (4-6 SU and ATS) blew a golden opportunity to beat a division opponent in losing 24-20 at home to the Packers last week and now must prepare for the AFC’s best team on short rest. The Lions saw QB Matthew Stafford complete less than half of his passes (17-of-39) for 266 yards with two interceptions but got WR Calvin Johnson involved (five catches for 143 yards) and hit him with the go-ahead touchdown with 3:01 left in the third quarter. However, they fell victim to Rodgers down the stretch and dropped to 0-4 in the NFC North, two games behind Minnesota for last place. Detroit is 3-3 SU in its last six games following a 1-3 start and has failed to cover two straight with the “over” going 3-1 in the team’s past four.

Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys
NFL Betting Preview
11/22/2012 at 4:15 p.m. (ET)
Opening Lines: Dallas -4, O/U 47
(click for latest NFL odds)
Television: FOX

Washington Redskins: The Redskins (4-6 SU, 5-5 ATS) ended a three-game skid off their bye week and will now try to win two in a row against division opponents when they visit another NFC East rival in Arlington. Washington drilled Philadelphia 31-6 last week behind four touchdown passes from rookie QB Robert Griffin III, who completed 14-of-15 overall for 200 yards. None of the team’s receivers caught more than three passes, including Pierre Garcon, who returned from a foot injury to play for the first time in five games and totaled three catches for just five yards. The “under” cashed for the fourth straight time overall for the Redskins, although the “over” is 3-2 in their five road games so far this season.

Dallas Cowboys: The Cowboys (5-5 SU, 4-6 ATS) needed OT to edge Cleveland 23-20 last week after playing four of their previous five games on the road. They began a stretch of five home games in six weeks against the Browns and will close out the regular season at Washington on December 30. Dallas once again relied on the arm of QB Tony Romo to carry the team, as he completed 35-of-50 passes for 313 yards, including a 28-yard touchdown pass to WR Dez Bryant (12 catches for 145 yards) with 6:46 left in regular for a 17-13 lead. The Cowboys struggled to run the ball again without RB DeMarco Murray, with Felix Jones totaling 43 yards on 14 carries. Murray (foot) is doubtful to return for the annual Thanksgiving Day affair (click to check updated NFL injury report), so Romo will likely look to burn one of the league’s worst pass defenses, surrendering 289.2 yards per game.

New England Patriots at New York Jets
NFL Betting Preview
11/22/2012 at 8:20 p.m. (ET)
Opening Lines: New England -7, O/U 50½
(click for latest NFL odds)
Television: NBC

New England Patriots: The Patriots (7-3 SU, 6-4 ATS) are coming off a 59-24 thrashing of Indianapolis last week, but the win did not come without a cost. All-Pro tight end Rob Gronkowski suffered a broken forearm while playing special teams on an extra-point attempt, and he is expected to miss a few games. Gronkowski hauled in seven catches for 137 yards, including two touchdowns, and he will be missed in the red zone as QB Tom Brady’s favorite target. The good news is that TE Aaron Hernandez is expected to return from an ankle injury and should be able to help Brady, who threw for 331 yards and three TDs against the Colts. Brady was actually outplayed by New York’s Mark Sanchez in the first meeting with the Jets (a 29-26 OT victory back on Oct. 21), and he will need to play better if the Pats are going to win their fifth straight game. The “over” has cashed in New England’s last eight games.

New York Jets: The Jets (4-6 SU, 6-4 ATS) ended their three-game losing streak with an impressive 27-13 road win at St. Louis last week. They had dropped five of six, including the loss to New England, but found a way to shut down the Rams and score just enough to help top the 38-point total. New York covered easily as 3½-point road underdogs and also beat the 11-point line in the first meeting with the Patriots. The Jets got good balance offensively against St. Louis with QB Mark Sanchez throwing for 178 yards and running backs Shonn Greene and Bilal Powell combining for 106 yards on 29 carries. One of the keys was not turning the ball over, something they did twice in the last game vs. New England. The Pats scored two defensive touchdowns off four Indy turnovers last week, including a 59-yard interception return from new cornerback Aqib Talib.

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