How should we bet on this contest? Is there any value on either side, and what should we do with the game's lofty total?
I didn't expect this, but Buffalo is the contrarian side in this spot. They're receiving only 40% of bets and 43% of the money in this spot.
The Bills -- fresh off two losses and failing to cover last week against Cleveland in this same building -- don't have quite the same shine to bettors they did early in the season.
Still, this is a great spot for the Bills if historical trends hold. The first key trend? Road favorites on Thanksgiving are 18-5 against the spread (ATS) since 2005. Typically, when road teams earn that status by having to travel on a short week, it's for good reason.
The second reason? There's no reason to fear a large number with Josh Allen. Allen is 11-2 straight up and 7-4-2 ATS in career games as a double-digit favorite. He's 3-1-1 ATS this year as a double-digit favorite.
Buffalo is in a position to crush it from an offensive standpoint. They're numberFire's fourth-best offense taking on the worst scheduled-adjusted defense in our model. I wish Detroit the same success against numberFire's sixth-best overall defense, but I wouldn't count on it.
While I'd lean to fade the public with Bills -9.5 (-110), my favorite bet in this contest is actually Over 54.5 Points (-108).
Buffalo's offense dismantling the Lions won't be a surprise, but I still think Detroit scores plenty against the Bills, who've ceded at least 20 points in four of their past five games. Plus, this game rates out above average in both combined situation-neutral pace and combined pass rate over expectation.
Player Props to Target
Josh Allen Over 323.5 Passing and Rushing Yards (-114)
As mentioned, Allen is incredibly well-positioned for a monstrous day against the Lions' defense. They're the third-worst pass defense in our nERD rankings, and the reason this prop stood out beyond passing yards alone was that Detroit is also our worst overall rushing defense.
Remember, Allen (483 rushing yards) is still Buffalo's leading rusher -- though Devin Singletary is right on his heels. I'd rather support this line in case Allen does plenty of damage on the ground in this spot.
Our median projections peg Allen for 344.6 passing plus rushing yards, which clears this total by a solid amount.
Jamaal Williams Over 55.5 Rushing Yards (-113)
Buffalo's defense has really leaked in one area -- the run game.
The Bills have ceded 0.06 Rushing Net Expected Points (NEP) per carry in the past five weeks, which ranks 17th in the NFL. It's not a deficiency, but it's just the path of least resistance.
Detroit will happily oblige. They're 10th in rush rate over expectation, and they've handed the reigns of their backfield to Jamaal Williams. He's gotten 19 carries per game in the past three weeks, which have turned into 68.0 yards per contest in that time.
A negative script here is the concern and why this line is significantly lower than Williams' recent average, but he should be given a fair share of chances on the path of least resistance.