After a plentiful Thanksgiving dinner, Patriots fans will get to watch New England on Turkey Day for the first time since 2012.
The Patriots come into their primetime matchup at 6-4 and will hope to hand the 8-2 Vikings their second straight loss. Despite its 40-3 blowout loss to the Dallas Cowboys in Week 11, Minnesota remains atop of the NFC North and the second-best team in the conference.
Thursday’s game is an important one for New England. It is third in the AFC East, tied with the New York Jets, and is a game behind the 7-3 Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills, who also play on Thanksgiving, then against the Patriots next Thursday.
A loss to the Vikings puts New England in some trouble for its playoff hopes, and the Patriots will need Mac Jones to step up his play if the defense and special teams can’t hold up their end of the matchup.
It’s an important game for both teams, and with the holiday and the primetime billing, there is sure to be plenty of betting action.
Here’s all bettors need to know for the Week 12 Patriots-Vikings clash, with betting odds from DraftKings Sportsbook.
New England Patriots at (-2.5) Minnesota Vikings
Total: Over/under 42.5
When: Thursday, Nov. 24, 8:20 p.m. ET
Where: U.S. Bank Stadium; Minneapolis, Minn.
BETTING TRENDS TO KNOW
Given the AFC versus NFC nature of the matchup, the Patriots and Vikings don’t have a long history against each other. The last time the two teams played was in 2018, where New England beat Minnesota, 24-10, as six-point favorites. The Patriots are 4-0 against the spread in the last last four meeting, and five of the last six games between the two teams has gone Under the total. New England will play its first road game after a two-game home stand, but Bill Belichick’s team has traveled well so far this season, with a 3-1-1 against the spread record, which contrasts with the Vikings’ 2-3 against the spread record at home.
The matchup is also a contrast in styles. The Patriots have gone Under in four of their last six games, but the Vikings have gone Over 12 of their last 18 games. Minnesota has been held under scrutiny heading into Thursday as being a fraudulent 8-2 team. It certainly has for bettors as it is 4-5-1 against the spread this season. However, the Vikings have rebounded well from double-digit losses, with a 4-0 against the spread record following such defeats. After a crushing, 24-7, “Monday Night Football” loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 2, the Vikings rebounded to beat the Detroit Lions, 28-24, in Week 3.
PATRIOTS PROP TO CONSIDER
Hunter Henry over 2.5 receptions (+140) — Poor play from New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson and Marcus Jones’ game-winning punt return touchdown helped mask how inefficient New England’s offense was last Sunday. Mac Jones deliver a fine stat line of 23-of-27 passing for 246 yards, but the Patriots were 4-of-15 on third down, 0-for-1 on fourth down and only average five yards per play. Matt Patricia needs to make the proper adjustments and make things easier for Jones, especially against an injury-riddled Minnesota defense. Funneling targets to the tight end would be a good step in doing that, and the Patriots need someone other than Jakobi Meyers or Rhamondre Stevenson to lean on in the passing game.
VIKINGS PROP TO CONSIDER
Team total touchdowns over 2.5 (+105) — Minnesota is 13th in scoring with 22.9 points per game. Oddsmakers have set the team total for the Vikings at 21.5, and the Patriots defense has been one of the league’s best. But this is faith in head coach Kevin O’Connell to make the proper adjustments coming off his team’s loss. It will be difficult without star left tackle Christian Darrisaw, but the Vikings have overachieved because of O’Connell’s play calling. It may seem counterintuitive, but the Minnesota are 10th in neutral pass rate, which has helped Kirk Cousins get into a rhythm, and if the QB can against New England’s defense, it’ll make for a solid bounce-back spot.
PICK: OVER 42.5
It’s in the Patriots’ best interest to keep games’ low scoring due to their inefficient offense. But with both teams dealing with injuries to the offensive line, their defenses could be more aggressive and speed up the game with big plays, either defensive scores or big chunk plays. Cousins is no stranger to coughing up the ball and giving the opposing team good field position, but Jones has been lucky to not have suffered a game-altering turnover. He had a pick-6 called back in Week 8 against the Jets, and if the Vikings do their part in pushing New England’s offense, Jones may not be so lucky this Thursday.