There are no turkeys on the Thanksgiving Day schedule.
Each NFL game on the holiday slate features at least one team that’s solidly in the playoff picture, capped by an NFC West showdown between the San Francisco 49ers and Seattle Seahawks in the Pacific Northwest on Thursday night. The Seahawks had won 16 of 20 at home in this rivalry before falling 21-13 in Week 15 of last season.
Who will win each of these holiday clashes and the rest of the Week 12 matchups? Every NFL week throughout the 2023 season, the supercomputer has something to say about every game. No matter if it’s a headliner or a game we may be less excited about, it unsentimentally beeps its way through the model’s NFL picks, boldly dropping score predictions.
For Week 12, it begins on Thanksgiving Day with the Green Bay Packers visiting the NFC North-leading Detroit Lions (on FOX) and it ends in the division with Justin Fields and the Chicago Bears traveling to face the Minnesota Vikings on Monday Night Football (on ESPN). For those games and everything between, we’ve taken plenty of data – advanced and historical – and pumped it through our predictive model.
Keep in mind this model uses our data only and nothing from the sports betting market to produce score projections, except for when we’re determining a winner from virtual ties. So there can be slight discrepancies in scores when considered against the percentages of our win probability model found elsewhere. These scores consider team news as of Wednesday.
The Lions have a 2.5-game lead on the Vikings and an NFL-best 91.3% probability of becoming division champions for the first time since 1993 (when it was the NFC Central). After David Montgomery’s 121 rushing yards and three touchdowns keyed a 34-20 win at Lambeau Field on Sept. 28, the Lions are going for their first five-game win streak against the Packers since an 11-game run from Dec. 11, 1949-Nov. 25, 1954.
Green Bay still has a 26.2% chance of reaching the playoffs after Jordan Love directed a big win over the Los Angeles Chargers last week, but the supercomputer likes the Lions by a field goal (24-21).
In Game 2 Thursday (on CBS), the Dallas Cowboys look to move within 1.5 games of the NFC East-leading Philadelphia Eagles, who host the Buffalo Bills on Sunday afternoon in a matchup our model sees as a toss-up. Behind only Philadelphia and Detroit, Dallas owns the third-highest probability of making the postseason in the entire league at 98.5%. However, only the Eagles (17.3%) have a better chance of winning the Super Bowl than the Cowboys’ 12.7%.
Dallas has won 12 in a row at home dating back to last season and six of the last seven meetings with Washington at AT&T Stadium in Arlington. Our model doesn’t see any reason why that trend will change after the Commanders have dropped seven of nine following a 2-0 start. It projects the Cowboys to come away with an eight-point victory (28-20).
We already mentioned that the NFL is saving the best for last Thanksgiving night with Brock Purdy and the 49ers heading into hostile territory to face Geno Smith and the Seahawks at Lumen Field. And our model indicates it could be as good as advertised, projecting San Francisco to pull out a 23-20 road win.
Even the first Black Friday game in league history the following evening pits the highly entertaining and high-scoring Miami Dolphins against new starting quarterback Tim Boyle and the AFC East rival New York Jets. The Dolphins have won 11 of the last 14 meetings, though all three losses have come on the road in 2017, 2019 and last year.
Our projection actually points to this one being much closer than people might expect, giving the Dolphins only a slight edge and a hard-fought 21-20 victory over the defensive-minded Jets.
Here are the scores for all the Week 12 games, including Russell Wilson and the much-improved Denver Broncos welcoming the 7-3 Cleveland Browns and Jake Browning filling in for the injured Joe Burrow when the Bengals host the Pittsburgh Steelers:
Week 12 NFL Picks and Predicted Scores
- Detroit Lions 24, Green Bay Packers 21
- Dallas Cowboys 28, Washington Commanders 20
- San Francisco 49ers 23, Seattle Seahawks 20
- Miami Dolphins 21, New York Jets 20
- Houston Texans 24, Jacksonville Jaguars 23
- Cincinnati Bengals 20, Pittsburgh Steelers 17
- Tennessee Titans 20, Carolina Panthers 17
- New Orleans Saints 23, Atlanta Falcons 20
- Indianapolis Colts 22, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 21
- New England Patriots 17, New York Giants 14
- Cleveland Browns 18, Denver Broncos 17
- Los Angeles Rams 24, Arizona Cardinals 21
- Philadelphia Eagles 25, Buffalo Bills 24
- Kansas City Chiefs 24, Las Vegas Raiders 20
- Los Angeles Chargers 24, Baltimore Ravens 23
- Minnesota Vikings 24, Chicago Bears 20