Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 11:30 AM EST odds are subject to change.
Buffalo -9½ -102 over Detroit
12:30 PM EST. The Lions roll into this Turkey Day with their chest puffed out after racking up three straight wins and covers. Knocking off Green Bay, Chicago, and the New York Giants last week has Detroit City’s stock on the uptick. When you win and cash in this market, the sins of the past are quickly forgotten. This is a “what have you done for me lately?” world, and all the Lions have done lately is cash tickets.
Detroit was a 3-point pooch at the Giants last week and rolled New York up by double digits, 31-18. It looks like a good win on paper, but if you watched that game or took a peek at the box score, you know the Lions won the turnover battle 3-0. If you are +3 in the turnover department you are supposed to win by a margin. If the Lions were tough luck losers early in the season, it’s fair to say their luck has changed. However, nothing goes together quite like the Lions and disappointment on Thanksgiving.
We admit fully that this appears to be a big pile of points for a red hot team to be taking back at home on a short week, but once you get under the hood and start rooting around, that pile of points doesn’t look so daunting. Despite covering just one of their last four games, the Bills are truly elite. Football Outsiders has Buffalo pegged as the second ranked squad by total team DVOA (defense-adjusted value over average ). The Bills are also tops in Estimated Wins with nine. The Bills are the only team in the league that has an Estimated Win total that is a full two games higher than their current posted total.
Buffalo is currently 7-3, and only 5-4-1 against the spread this season. There is a perception in the market that the Bills are disinterested in this regular season and can’t wait for the playoff to begin, but that could not be further from the truth. The Bills are playing at an elite level this season, and they’re doing at against the seventh toughest schedule according to Football Outsiders.
Much has been made about the Bills having to play in Detroit on short notice last week and then deciding to return to Buffalo after playing the Browns before turning around and heading back to the Motor City for this early Thursday game, but head coach Sean McDermott said going back to Buffalo for a few nights was what was best for his team, “I wanted to get the guys some quality rest and get in their own beds tonight.” We’ll trust coach knows what is best for this group and one figures the Bills will be rested and ready to go today. Pass the gravy, we’re going to swallow the points.
Buffalo -9½ -102 (Risking 2.04 units - To Win: 2.00)