NFL Thanksgiving 2020 Preview

By Dan Miccio

It is every football fan’s favorite week, Thanksgiving Week, and there’s a full slate of NFL Football on Thursday with a pair of matchups:

Houston Texans (3-7) @ Detroit Lions (4-6)

12:30 P.M. EST CBS

The Detroit Lions host the Houston Texans, coming off a blowout loss to the Carolina Panthers. Meanwhile, the Texans held off the New England Patriots 27-20 to secure their third win of the season.

Both teams feature offenses that are statistically very similar. Houston Texans’ Quarterback Deshaun Watson has thrown 2,883 passing yards, along with 20 passing touchdowns, 2 more on the ground and 5 picks. He’s also completing 68.9 percent of his passes with a passer rating of 108.6. Detroit Lions’ Quarterback Matthew Stafford has thrown 17 touchdowns along with 7 interceptions, over 2,581 passing yards. Ultimately, both offenses average 22.7 points per game.

One key factor in this game will be protecting Matthew Stafford. Stafford has been sacked 27 times this season. The only quarterbacks in the NFL who have been sacked more than Stafford are Cincinnati’s Joe Burrow, Seattle’s Russell Wilson, and Philadelphia’s Carson Wentz. With a Houston defensive front, led by J.J. Watt, has the potential to wreak havoc on Detroit’s struggling offensive line.

Washington Football Team (3-7) vs Dallas Cowboys (3-7)

4:30 P.M. EST FOX

Is it really Thanksgiving if Washington and Dallas square off? The Dallas Cowboys defeated the Minnesota Vikings and Washington defeated the Cincinnati Bengals last week to enter into a three-way-tie for second place in the NFC East, only trailing the Philadelphia Eagles by a half of a game in the standings.

The Cowboys are coming into this game with more stability in their offense, as Andy Dalton returns for his second straight start after landing in the NFL Concussion Protocol. Washington has the feel-good story with Alex Smith playing on Thanksgiving after his battle to return to the NFL, recovering from his gruesome leg injury over two years ago.

This game is going to come down to Washington stopping the run. Dallas is a better team than their record shows but if Washington stops Ezekiel Elliot and Tony Pollard from dominating the football game, the Football Team will have a chance to win the game. Dallas needs to contain the 2020 second overall pick, Chase Young. Limiting that defensive line’s ability to stop the run will give the Cowboys their best chance to win this Thanksgiving favorite.

The game between the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers, originally set for the primetime 8:30 PM EST game, was moved to Sunday due to COVID-19 concerns.

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