How to Legally Bet Thanksgiving Day Football Games With Previews, Odds And More

USA FlagWhile some refer to this technological era as the age of information, it could just as well be expressed by calling it the age of disinformation. After all, for every fact you can find online, it will be surrounded by hordes of information masquerading as facts but, at best, are exaggerations and untruths. For instance, how many Americans know that betting on sports is actually perfectly legal? Sadly, with all the disinformation floating around online, many Americans believe it's illegal to gamble via the Internet. When, in actuality, it's 100% legal for you to sign up with a sportsbook and to place as many NFL bets as you want.

This is an important fact to know, particularly if you're a fan of the NFL on Thanksgiving Day. The three games being played on turkey day may just be some of the most exciting all year. We have two divisional match-ups to be played, and then a battle in the AFC between two 5-5 teams vying for the playoffs. The action will be intense, and the bets will pour in by the millions. If you're hoping to make a bet on Thanksgiving, let's go over a quick user guide that will help you pull it off.

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A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Bet on Thanksgiving Day Football

Step 1: Find the Right Website

The first step in any betting process will be finding the right website with which to bet. But how do you go about finding the “right” sportsbook when there are hundreds or more to choose from? Before services like ours came along, the answer would have been lengthy and complicated; that is to say, you would have had to employ trial and error to test these sites to see which were the best. Or, even worse, you would have had to rely on paid reviews of sites, which are never accurate and only exist to push affiliate links. Luckily, you don't have to go down either of those treacherous roads. Simply check out our list of the top-five online sportsbooks open to USA players, and rest assured that you're signing up with a quality site.

Just a few words here to let you know you're finding the right sites with us: We go through painstaking measures to play with and review these sites, and we're not listing sites unless they meet our stringent criteria, which includes but isn't limited to a great reputation, tight security, banking options, great bonuses and promos, live and prop betting, solid support, and much more. So you're going to be able to find a winning site by choosing from our list.

Step 2: Follow All Requisite Sign-Up Steps

When you choose a site, make doubly sure that you're following every single one of the site's sign-up rules. If you're not following the site's rules and regulations, you could very well face issues with your money or with your bets. You might not even be able to log on unless you have followed the steps correctly. We're not talking about anything complex here; usually is the case that you'll need an email, a browser that's rated for use, and you'll simply have to follow the guidelines of betting and behavior. Do those things and you're well on your way to enjoying the site and placing your bets.

Step 3: Work Out a Budget

Unfortunately, many individuals attempt to use sports betting as some get-rich-quick formula, whereby they're placing very large bets and are blowing through their money after one string of bets. Say you have a starting stack of $500, and you decide to place the full $500 on the games. That's tremendous if you win; it's a huge windfall. But it's even more serious if you lose! Therefore, we strongly recommend setting up a budget for yourself. Never bet more than 10% of your stack on any one game, and never chase a loss by betting more money the next time. To ensure that you're making smart, logical, winning bets, simply refer to step #4 and follow the advice closely.

Step 4: Learn About the Teams Playing On Thanksgiving

You definitely want to learn about the teams before you place a bet. Don't simply bet with the Vegas lines. Oddsmakers aren't picking which team they think will win the game; what they're doing is setting a line that will hopefully draw equal amounts of action from both sites, which is how they balance their books and make a profit. So when you see that the Cowboys are -7, that's not a prediction; that's simply the line oddsmakers speculate will bring in bets 50/50 for each team. They predict that half the audience believes Dallas will win by more than 7, and that the other half believes the Redskins will come within a touchdown.

Therefore, it's incredibly important for you to look at starting rosters, weather conditions, injury reports, and to view stats on team momentum and win streaks, etc. The more knowledgeable you are of the teams in question, the higher the likelihood is that you will win a bet. We will provide you with a game preview below, but it's still up to you to ensure you're learning about the teams.

A Short Preview of the Thanksgiving Day Games Covering Odds And Predictions

Minnesota Vikings @ Detroit Lions

Betting Odds: Minnesota -3 Over/Under 44.5

The Lions will be hosting the Vikings in their typical Thanksgiving Day fixture. Minnesota has been playing better and is currently on top of the NFC North division, which is surprising given the injuries they’ve accrued. QB Case Keenum has filled in nicely to replace the injured Sam Bradford and will likely start against the Lions. While franchise star Teddy Bridgewater is back from injury, the Vikings should opt to start the in-form Keenum. RB Dalvin Cook is out with an ACL injury, which is a loss considering the Lions’ terrible rush defense, but Latavius Murray and Jerick McKinnon should have strong performances.

Meanwhile, the Lions are second in the division, so this is a good matchup and telling of who is the best around. QB Matt Stafford has been playing to his usual standard. Look out for WR Golden Tate and RB Ameer Abdullah to be the main targets. If the Lions can get out in front quickly, they may have a chance. Otherwise, the Vikings should win this one. Detroit can capitalize on their injuries, and they should if they want to claim the division.

Los Angeles Chargers @ Dallas Cowboys

Betting Odds: Dallas -1 Over/Under 47.5

The Dallas Cowboys will host the LA Chargers for the second Thanksgiving Day game. The Cowboys were one of the best teams in the league last year, though they ultimately fell short in the Playoffs. We got to see the emergence of 2 incredible rookies in QB Dak Prescott and RB Ezekiel Elliot. After last season, some believed the Cowboys had Super Bowl implications. At second in the NFC East, they aren’t as successful as they were last year, and they will be without Elliot for this Thanksgiving game. The RB is serving a 6-game suspension for violating the NFL’s Personal Conduct Policy. RB Alfred Morris will pick up the slack, and the Cowboys should have no problem beating the Chargers, but Elliot’s presence will be missed.

The Chargers have been irrelevant for some time now, especially since their move from San Diego to LA. QB Philip Rivers is an elite player, but the team lacks the chemistry to close out games. RB Melvin Gordon and WR Mike Williams are his go-to options and will be heavily involved in this matchup. At third in the AFC West, it is doubtful they will be able to defeat the Cowboys.

New York Giants @ Washington Redskins

Betting Odds: Washington -7.5 Over/Under 44

The Giants have been the worst team in the league this season. They only have 1 win and will likely eat another loss during the primetime Thanksgiving Day game. WR Odell Beckham Jr. has been out for the season after breaking his ankle and QB Eli Manning practically looks lost out on the field. For a team that normally makes the Playoffs, this fall from grace has been hard to watch for fans.

The Washington Redskins should win this game no problem. However, they have had a high number of injuries to key players including Jordan Reed, Spencer Long, Terrelle Pryor, Rob Kelley, Jonathan Allen and more. They still have QB Kirk Cousins and CB Josh Norman, but they are currently sitting in third place in the NFC East. This should be an easy win for the Redskins, as the Giants look lifeless at this point.

We've just updated our Super Bowl odds now that the playoffs have started. You can check them out here and find a list of the top 6 sportsbooks to bet on Super Bowl 51 this year.

Final Scores And Recaps

Minnesota Vikings @ Detroit Lions

Final Score: Vikings 30, Lions 23

The score may be close on paper, but the Vikings dominated throughout the game. Even with key players like QB Sam Bradford and RB Dalvin Cook out with injuries, the Vikings’ supporting cast came to play. QB Case Keenum has been a sparkplug for this team and reinvigorated their offense. His linkup play with TE Kyle Rudolph was on point throughout the game, as the pair matched for 2 touchdowns. The Vikings defense was able to put QB Matt Stafford under constant pressure and converted 2 interceptions, including a pick-6. RB Latavius Murray was strong for the Vikings and put up a touchdown of his own. The backup has taken the helm for the injured rookie Cook. Detroit had some decent moments; Marvin Jones Jr. had a fantastic game, and Stafford played well despite the 2 interceptions, but it was not enough.

Los Angeles Chargers @ Dallas Cowboys

Final Score: Chargers 28, Cowboys 6

In what would be the biggest upset of the day, the Chargers dismantled the Cowboys. QB Philip Rivers had a strong performance, though to be honest the Dallas defensive secondary gave him every advantage. Still, Rivers showed why he is an elite QB. The Cowboys were heavily favored to win this game, even with RB Ezekiel Elliot out due to suspension. QB Dak Prescott, who has played well in his sophomore season, had probably the worst game of his career. The Chargers defense were relentless in their pressure. The Cowboys run game was flat without Elliot. Every time Dallas broke out, they were flagged for a penalty and brought back. LA isn’t exactly the best team in the league right now, so for the Cowboys to lose in such fashion is a red flag for America’s Team. This game exposed their weaknesses, and as the postseason nears, the Cowboys have little time to make any adjustments.

New York Giants @ Washington Redskins

Final Score: Redskins 20, Giants 10

The third and final game of the day was the most boring. The Giants are the worst team in the league aside from the Cleveland Browns, and the Redskins have been enjoying an average season. However, with this win and the Cowboys’ loss, the Redskins could still make a push for the Wild Card. This game was relatively quiet up until the third quarter. The Giants offense was ineffective, but their defense converted an interception into a touchdown. This was Washington’s game to win and they did just that. As for the Giants, they can only hope to draft well and come back next year when their star WR is back from injury.