NFL Thanksgiving Games: Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions Betting Preview

NFL Thanksgiving Games: Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions Betting Preview

NFL Thanksgiving Games: Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions Betting Preview

The trio of Thanksgiving Day games this year begins with the 184th meeting between the Chicago Bears and the Detroit Lions, a series that dates back to 1930. The teams have been in the same division since 1933 and have typically played twice per year, so this is a rivalry with plenty of context. Starting this season, the teams play for the Heraldry Shield; the Bears have won 103 of the first 183 meetings, with Detroit winning 75 (and five games ending in ties). The Bears have dropped four in a row; Detroit finally ended a grueling losing streak with an odd tie against the Pittsburgh Steelers last week.

We have your lookahead NFL betting odds for this game along with some thoughts about the outcome.

NFL Thanksgiving Preview: Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions (Thursday, November 25)

When: Thursday, November 25, 2021, 12:30 pm ET
Where: Ford Field, Detroit
Radio: Westwood One
Live Stream: Hulu
NFL Odds: Chicago -3 / O/U 45

Why should you bet on the Bears?

The Chicago defense got off to a great start to the season, but since then they have not played as well. Roquan Smith continues to be one of the league’s great off-ball linebackers. Going into the bye, Smith had a dozen tackles and a sack against Pittsburgh as the Bears almost pulled off an amazing comeback — before that defense collapsed in the waning minutes of regulations. Through Week 9, Smith had 93 tackles, tied with Seattle’s Bobby Wagner for the team lead. Khalil Mack still plays for the Bears, but his defensive prowess has dropped significantly in the past two seasons.

One bright spot in this recent downturn has been the growth of Justin Fields at the quarterback position. He struggled in early weeks, thanks in part to dreadful O-line protection and in part to poor decision-making of his own, but since then he has shown signs of being ready to lead an NFL offense. His drives in the second half against Pittsburgh before the bye showed veteran-level confidence and execution, but the defense showed a lack of discipline in the game’s last drive, giving away two neutral-zone infractions and having multiple coverage breakdowns. Can the Bears take control against a much, much worse Lions team?

Why should you put your money on the Lions?

Jared Goff looked briefly like his move to Detroit would rejuvenate his career, as he played well in the team’s first two losses. By now, though, this is a team that expects to lose up and down the roster. The Lions led Pittsburgh in the second half…only to see that lead evaporate. They got the opportunity to win in overtime, as the Steelers turned the ball over twice in extra time. However, Ryan Santoso was so psyched out that his 48-yard field goal attempt looked like something out of high school — a kick that would have delivered the win. AT the end of the game, head coach Dan Campbell compared the outcome to something from the television show The Twilight Zone, where odd events happen in every episode.

The rebuilding continues, but remember that the Lions have been right there a few times this season. They had the Ravens before giving up a fourth-and-19 and a 66-yard field goal as time expired. They went to Minnesota and lost on a late field goal. They have also taken some whippings this season, but this is a team that looks like it might break through. They visit Cleveland this week before coming home to host the Bears on a short week, and if Baker Mayfield can’t go for the Browns, that game could get interesting.

Final Score and Betting Prediction

I see Justin Fields trending upward a lot more quickly than anyone on the Detroit Lions’ roster. I predict a final score of Chicago 27, Detroit 16.

Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions : Bet the Game Today


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