The Detroit Lions Thanksgiving game is an NFL tradition, and in 2020 they’ll celebrate with a game against the Houston Texans. With kickoff fast approaching, let’s preview the game and give you all the information you need to watch the first of the two 2020 Thanksgiving games, and how we believe this game will play out on the field. Let’s break down the Lions vs. Texans Thanksgiving day matchup!
Week 12 NFL Power Rankings and NFL Week 11 Recap
Before jumping into our coverage of the Lions Thanksgiving game, check out some of our other NFL articles. PFN’s Senior NFL Analyst Matt Williamson (Former NFL Scout and ESPN Analyst) released his Week 12 Power Rankings following the games on Monday Night Football in Week 11. The Lions are one of the 10 worst teams in the NFL, due in large part to an offense that has dealt with injuries all year. Meanwhile, the Texans are one of the five worst teams in the NFL due to a terrible defense and the fact they’ve only beaten the Jaguars and Patriots this season.
Be sure also to check out Mike Tanier’s NFL Week 11 Recap. This week, Mike breaks down Taysom Hill’s first career start, the playoff hopes of some of the NFL’s best teams, and awards his Studs and Duds of Week 11!
Who plays on Thanksgiving?
Game: Detroit Lions vs. Houston Texans
Location: Detroit, Michigan at Ford Field
How to watch the Lions Thanksgiving game | Start Time, TV Channel, and Live Stream
Date: Thursday, November 26th
NFL Thanksgiving Day Start Time, Week 12: 12:30 PM ET
Stream: NFL App
Detroit Lions Thanksgiving Game 2020 | What to expect from Lions vs. Texans?
The 2020 game between the Detroit Lions and Houston Texans will be the second time the teams have met on Thanksgiving. Their first matchup was a tight game in 2012 that the Texans were able to pull out on their path to a 12-4 record. This time the stakes are much lower. Both the Lions and Texans are likely to be among the 10 worst teams in the NFL when the season is over. The Texans sit at 3-7 after 10 games, while the Lions sit at 4-6.
The Texans will attack with their running game. The Lions struggle to shutdown running backs in all phases of the game, so Duke Johnson has the opportunity to see a lot of touches. Their passing game will be hurt by Randall Cobb’s absence, but Will Fuller and Brandin Cooks are still major weapons that could break the Lions defense on any given play.
Meanwhile, the Lions will look to attack a similarly weak Texans run defense. D’Andre Swift missed the Week 11 game with a concussion, but is trending in the right direction. Adrian Peterson is available, but he’s not a starting caliber back anymore. If the Lions are cautious with Swift look for the offense to run through Marvin Jones and T.J. Hockenson. The Texans struggle against the pass as well, but again the Lions will be without their biggest weapon, Kenny Golladay.
Look for the Texans to pull this one out against a banged-up Lions team that could be without their two best offensive players.
Final Thanksgiving Score Prediction: Texans win 27-17
Thanksgiving Fantasy Advice | Lions vs Texans
The Lions have a few interesting options for their Thanksgiving game. D’Andre Swift would be a must-start this week under normal circumstances, the Texans have given up the third-most points to running backs.
However, Swift’s injury question marks make it hard to rely on him. This may be the week to resurrect Adrian Peterson from your bench or the waiver wire. Marvin Jones could also be a smart start. With Kenny Golladay out for the game, Jones will be the Lions’ number one receiver. The Texans have given up the ninth-most points to receivers this year, making Jones an interesting value play.
Duke Johnson is an intriguing start this week, but his struggles in the past few weeks should give you caution. The Lions have given up more points to running backs than any other team this year. Johnson will likely be a major part of the Texans’ offense Thursday, so you should take this chance to make him a key part of yours. The Lions are 16th in points against quarterbacks and wide receivers. However, it is hard to ignore what the trio of Will Fuller, Brandin Cooks, and Deshaun Watson has done this season, so all three are on the radar to start as they usually would be. The Lions are even better against tight ends, allowing the ninth-fewest points, making it tough to trust Hockenson this week.
With playmakers on both sides of the ball, the Lions Thanksgiving game should play a big part in your fantasy gameplan this week.
2020 NFL Season: Thursday Night Football Schedule
Thursday Night Football: September Schedule
- Thursday, September 10: Texans at Chiefs
- Thursday, September 16: Bengals at Browns
- Thursday, September 24: Dolphins at Jaguars
Thursday Night Football: October Schedule
- Thursday, October 1: Broncos at Jets
- Thursday, October 8th: Buccaneers at Bears
- Thursday, October 22: New York Giants at Eagles
- Thursday, October 29: Falcons at Panthers
Thursday Night Football: November Schedule
- Thursday, November 5: Packers at 49ers
- Thursday, November 12: Colts at Titans
- Thursday, November 19: Cardinals at Seahawks
- Thursday, November 26: Ravens at Steelers – Postponed to Sunday, November 29
Thursday Night Football: December Schedule
- Thursday, December 3: Cowboys at Ravens
- Thursday, December 10: Patriots at Los Angeles Rams
- Thursday, December 17: Chargers at Raiders