Week 12 NFL Picks: Predicting Winners for Each Thanksgiving Day Showdown

Ben ChodosCorrespondent IINovember 21, 2012

HOUSTON, TX - NOVEMBER 18:  Arian Foster #23 of the Houston Texans rushes against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Reliant Stadium on November 18, 2012 in Houston, Texas. Houston wins 43-37 in overtime. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Bob Levey/Getty Images

Family, food and football make Thanksgiving one of the best days of the year, but players on three teams will not be enjoying the holiday as much as the rest of us.

With three games set for Thursday, there are matchups for NFL fans to enjoy all day.

While people who get to relax, stuff their faces and watch the games at home will all be winners, the same cannot be said for the athletes providing the entertainment. 

Here are my picks for each Thanksgiving day game.


Houston Texans over Detroit Lions

The Lions are playing at home while the Texans are coming off a dismal defensive performance in which they allowed the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars to score 37 point.

This makes it tempting to take Detroit in an upset, but that will not be the case. The last time Houston’s defense had a game that bad was in Week 6 against the Green Bay Packers.

The team allowed Aaron Rodgers to throw six touchdowns and gave up 42 points. The next week, it came out and shut down the Baltimore Ravens in a 43-13 victory.

Houston will bounce back in this game and the Lions’ 2012 Thanksgiving will be one they would rather forget.


Washington Redskins over Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys squeaked by the Cleveland Browns last week and now have won two games in a row. Now, Dallas is 5-5 and has its eye on the playoffs. 

But the Redskins stopped a three-game skid last week with a dominant 31-6 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles in which Robert Griffin III completed 14-of-15 passes and threw four touchdowns. 

He also led the team in rushing with 84 yards on 12 carries and Griffin’s confidence will be soaring when he takes on the Cowboys. 

The Washington offense will continue to produce at a high level while Griffin gets a turkey leg for leading the team to victory.


New England Patriots over New York Jets

The Patriots' offense looked unstoppable against the Colts, but the team also lost star tight end Rob Gronkowski to a broken forearm

Gronkowski is tied for the NFL lead with 10 touchdown catches, and this is a massive loss for New England.

But Tom Brady will still be under center, and he still has Wes Welker and Brandon Lloyd to throw to. He has been extremely productive in the past with significantly less talented players in his receiving corps.

Despite Gronkowski’s absence, this game will not be close and the Patriots will cruise to an easy victory.