Thursday Night Football Odds
This year’s NFL Thursday Night Football schedule was chock full of exciting games, from the Buccaneers edging out the Cowboys in Week 1 down to the finale, which saw the Titans take down the 49ers on a last-minute field goal. Let’s just say that the schedule makers will have a tough act to follow when setting up the 2022 TNF docket.
Below find all you need to know about how to bet on the NFL on Thursday Nights, including up-to-the-minute Thursday Night Football lines & odds direct from legal US online sportsbooks. Click on any odds or “bet this game” to go directly to the sportsbook, claim your bonus and register your account.
This Week’s Thursday Night Football Odds: Spread, Moneyline, Over-Under
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Who’s Playing Thursday Night Football this week?
The NFL regular season schedule has been expanded from 16 to 17 games. Each of the 32 clubs get one bye week over the course of an 18-week regular season (see how bye weeks affect betting here).
That bumps the total schedule up from 256 to 272 games. It’s great news for NFL bettors as there are more opportunities to get in the game, but also even more of a herculean task for the schedule makers who have to make it all work.
While computers and algorithms do a lot of the heavy lifting, special attention has to be paid to certain situations, such as how teams are scheduled for TNF. Overall, the goal is to make sure that no squad scheduled for this slot has to play on a short week more than once per season.
Thursday Night Football schedule for 2021 NFL season
This year’s Thursday Night Football schedule offers many must-see matchups. Let’s take a closer look at the football games on tap. (All times Eastern)
Week 1: Sept. 9
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 31 Dallas Cowboys 29
The much-anticipated opening game of the regular season didn’t disappoint. The Cowboys put up a fight against the defending Super Bowl champion Buccaneers, but a Ryan Succop 36-yard field goal with seven seconds remaining sealed the deal for the home squad. The ageless Tom Brady threw for 379 yards and three scores in the victory.
Week 2: Sept. 16
Washington Football Team 30 New York Giants 29
The Week 2 TNF affair also went down to the wire. After the Giants took a 29-27 lead with a late field goal, Taylor Heinicke led Washington down the field for an 11-play, 50-yard drive with two minutes left on the clock before Dustin Hopkins banged the game-winning field goal home. Heinicke threw for 336 yards and a pair of TDs in the win.
Week 3: Sept. 23
Carolina Panthers 24 Houston Texans 9
The Panthers travelled to Houston as big 8-point favorites and proved that the hype was more than warranted. Carolina held the Texans in check in a low-scoring affair, easily picking up the cover while pushing their straight-up record to a perfect 3-0. Sam Darnold threw for 304 yards and ran for a pair of TDs in the victory.
Week 4: Sept. 30
Cincinnati Bengals 24 Jacksonville Jaguars 21
Anticipation was high for a meeting of the last two top picks in the NFL Draft. When all was said and done, it was Joe Burrow and the Bengals getting the best of Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars for an exciting home win. Jacksonville looked like it was headed towards its first win of the season, but Cincinnati roared back with 10 points to steal the victory.
Week 5: Oct. 7
Los Angeles Rams 26 Seattle Seahawks 17
The Rams stepped onto the field as 2.5-point road favorites. After playing to a scoreless tie in the first quarter. Los Angeles went into the locker room with a 7-3 halftime lead and held on for a 26-17 victory. The final score sailed well under the listed total of 54 points. Seattle QB Russell Wilson went down to injury in the loss and is expected to miss a few weeks.
Week 6: Oct. 14
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 28 Philadelphia Eagles 22
The defending Super Bowl champion Buccaneers (still among the betting favorites to win the Super Bowl), took control early and went into the half with a big lead, but the hosts managed to make it interesting in the game’s latter stages. Tampa Bay was a 7-point favorite heading in, but a late rushing TD from Jalen Hurts gave Eagles backers the cover in a 28-22 defeat. The total sailed Under the 53-point benchmark set by oddsmakers.
Week 7: Oct. 21
Cleveland Browns 17 Denver Broncos 14
Cleveland has been decimated with injuries, but that didn’t prevent them from delivering one of their most inspired performances of the season. It was a fantastic night for backups as Case Keenum and D’Ernest Johnson seized the opportunity to lead the way on offense. The Broncos made it interesting after the half, but the Browns hung on for a 3-point win.
Week 8: Oct. 28
Green Bay Packers 24 Arizona Cardinals 21
The Cardinals were the last undefeated team of the 2021 season heading into this home game. That’s no longer the case despite the Packers being 6.5-point underdogs and down a few key pieces on offense. It was a total team effort from Green Bay in a 3-point victory that could have some huge implications on seeding in the NFC Playoffs.
Week 9: Nov. 4
Indianapolis Colts 45 New York Jets 30
The Jets were a bit of a feel-good story heading into TNF off of a surprising upset victory, but the Colts quickly changed the vibe. Indianapolis started doing damage in the first half and continued to pour it on, while New York added on some garbage time scores. The Colts easily covered the 10-point spread while the total sailed well over the 46-point bar.
Week 10: Nov. 11
Miami Dolphins 22 Baltimore Ravens 10
As 8.5-point favorites, this was expected to be a walkover for the Ravens and perennial NFL MVP odds favorite Lamar Jackson. The Dolphins put forth their best effort of the season to make sure that didn’t happen. Miami held Baltimore completely in check on offense while delivering one of the more surprising results of the 2021 regular season with a 12-point victory in a game well under the original NFL over/under odds set at 47.5.
Week 11: Nov. 18
New England Patriots 25 Atlanta Falcons 0
The Patriots were 7-point road favorites and expected to win. They proceeded to put the rest of the NFL on notice with a dominating performance. The Falcons couldn’t get anything going on offense against the stifling New England defense. A 35-yard pick-six by Kyle Van Noy put the exclamation point on a resounding victory for the visitors.
Week 12: Nov. 25
Buffalo Bills 31 New Orleans Saints 6
Heading into the game, the Bills had lost three of their last five while the Saints were riding a three-game losing streak, so something had to give in the battle of playoff hopefuls. Buffalo broke through with a dominating performance behind four TDs from Josh Allen and a smothering defense. The Bills served notice to the rest of the league in a 25-point laugher.
Week 13: Dec. 2
Dallas Cowboys 27 New Orleans Saints 17
The Cowboys and Saints both stepped onto the field looking to bounce back from disappointing losses on Thanksgiving. Dallas managed to do so, while injury-riddled New Orleans was once again not ready for primetime. The Cowboys easily covered as 6.5-point road favorites with the Saints adding on a late garbage-time TD to close the gap.
Week 14: Dec. 9
Minnesota Vikings 36 Pittsburgh Steelers 28
The Vikings dominated the first half and walked into the break with a 23-0 lead. After they padded the lead even further, the shellshocked Steelers decided to wake up. Pittsburgh stormed back, and even had a chance to tie it up before the dream went up in smoke. Minnesota covered as 3.5-point favorites while Over bettors celebrated.
Week 15: Dec. 16
Kansas City Chiefs 34 Los Angeles Chargers 28 (OT)
Fireworks were expected for this one, and the two AFC West rivals didn’t disappoint. After the teams were knotted up at 28 apiece at the end of regulation, Patrick Mahomes hit Travis Kelce for a 34-yard game-winning TD in OT. Kansas City covered as 3-point road favorites while the total went well over the 54-point bar.
Week 16: Dec. 23
Tennessee Titans 20 San Francisco 17
It was a fitting end to a competitive 2021 TNF schedule as this one went down to the wire. The 49ers knotted it up at 17 apiece with a little over two minutes to go. The Titans marched back on the next drive. Randy Bullock sealed the deal with a 44-yard game-winner. Tennessee covered as 3.5-point dogs while the total sailed under the bar of 45 points.
What time does Thursday Night Football start?
Each game on the 2021 NFL Thursday Night Football slate is scheduled to kick off at 8:20 P.M. ET. The start time is the same regardless of broadcast outlet, but pregame festivities may vary by network. As always, dates, matchups, and times are subject to change, but the TNF schedule is set in stone barring any unforeseen circumstances.
Betting on NFL’s Thursday Night Football
Thursday Night Football kicks off the NFL viewing week, and it’s also a huge highlight at legal and regulated US online sportsbooks. You’ll have plenty of different bets to consider for the game, and there are typically some intriguing promos for TNF, too.
First, here are the basic bets you can place.
- Moneyline: Just choose which side you think will win.
- Point spread: The side you pick has to cover the spread in one direction or the other.
- Totals (Over/Under): Oddsmakers set the bar for points scored. You choose Over or Under that amount.
- Props: Basically like having side action on the game on things that might happen.
For props, many will revolve around specific statistical accomplishments of the players. This is also an area in which sportsbooks may throw out some odds boosts or other special promos, so be sure to watch out for them.
While you can’t do a typical parlay bet on TNF, you can combine bets – such as a moneyline and total or spread plus total – for a shot at enhanced returns. Many of these combos will pay out at positive odds, so keep them in mind when you have a good feel for the game.
Live Betting on Thursday Night Football
When an NFL primetime game is on the docket, live betting opens the door to even more betting opportunities. For a busy Sunday afternoon slate, you have plenty of games to pick from, whereas the night games are standalone affairs.
You can bet right along with Thursday Night Football as the game plays out on your screen. Offerings will vary based on what’s going on, but here’s a peek at what you might see.
- What will be the result of the Rams drive – TD/FG/Punt/TO/Downs?
- Who will have more rushing yards by halftime – Saquon Barkley or Miles Sanders?
- How many total points will be scored in the second quarter – Over/Under 14.5?
There will also be updated odds for sides and totals as the contest plays out. You’ll even be able to drill down on bets for specific segments of the game, such as the first quarter or second half.
Live betting markets move really fast, but sportsbook apps let you handle business quickly and efficiently. You’ll find current live betting opportunities featured prominently on the betting menu as well.
What are the Thursday Night Football Vegas Odds?
Once upon a time, bookmakers out in Las Vegas served as the first and last word on sports betting odds. While those talented folks remain at the top of their game, the market isn’t cornered any longer.
Sports betting has been legalized in a number of states now, and there will be more to come. Online sportsbooks in legalized sports betting states now provide lines that are right on point with Vegas NFL odds. The latest odds for every Thursday Night Football game can be found in the odds feed above.
Thursday Night Football Betting Trends & Tips
For a game on a short week, the home side has a built in advantage. That has held up pretty well since TNF became a regular thing, but it’s important to remember that trends are no guarantee of what the future may hold.
However, home field makes for a great tiebreaker on Thursday nights. Here are some specific strategy tips you can use for the first NFL game of the week.
Rest or travel advantage: Does either side have one? Be sure to keep an eye on what has been going on with both teams of late. For example, a team that has had a recent bye may have a slight edge over a team that’s still waiting for theirs.
Splits: This goes beyond the basic home/away advantages. See how the teams are performing on all of the big betting metrics: moneyline, spread, and totals. Also, many TNF games are divisional affairs, so take records in those games in consideration.
Team/player primetime history: Some squads and athletes excel under the bright lights, while others shine brighter during the day. As part of your research, see what’s the case with both teams and their key players when it comes to night games.
Thursday Night Football Over Under History
Researching trends can be a useful part of any NFL betting strategy. However, it’s important to remember that historical trends are just one piece of the puzzle. What happened in the past is no guarantee of what’s to come in the future, but it can help you to build out a case.
Thursday Night Football can be one of the tougher games to break down successfully, mainly due to the short week of preparation that both sides have to deal with. If we look back at the scoreboards for the last three years, here’s what has happened with the Over/Under.
- 2020: Over 7-8
- 2019: Over 7-8
- 2018: Over 10-5
- 3-year total: Over 24-21
For 2019 and 2020, it was nearly split down the middle for totals results. However, when we look back at 2018, there was a clear advantage for the Over. Thanks to that, the Over side has a slight edge for the whole time period.
If you went solely with the Over for the last three seasons, you would have had a nice 2018, but you’d basically be treading water on an overall basis. For NFL bettors, that’s another strong argument for the importance of tracking results and adapting as needed.
Thursday Night Football All-Time Records
Thursday Night Football games have been a thing for some time, but they became a regular part of the later season schedule in 2006. Fast forward to 2012, and TNF was expanded to run throughout the season.
From 2006 to the present day, some clubs have been up to the task when a TNF game pops up, while others have fallen quite short. Here’s a look at some of the notable facts and figures on TNF since 2006.
- Teams with best winning percentage: Patriots .800 (8-2), Seahawks .800 (8-2)
- Teams with worst winning percentage: Buccaneers .250 (3-9)
- Most appearances: 16 – San Francisco 49ers
- Fewest appearances: 3 – Detroit Lions
- Highest scoring game: 80 points – Rams over 49ers, 41-39, Week 3 of 2017
Which teams have played the most on Thursday Night?
Since 2006, a handful of clubs have made regular appearances on TNF, while others haven’t been on all that much. Here’s a look at the total number of appearances and records on Thursday nights for all 32 teams over that span.
|San Francisco 49ers||16||9-7|
|Las Vegas Raiders||13||6-7|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||12||3-9|
|Kansas City Chiefs||11||8-3|
|Los Angeles Chargers||11||7-4|
|Los Angeles Rams||11||4-7|
|New England Patriots||10||8-2|
|New York Jets||10||4-6|
|Green Bay Packers||9||7-2|
|Washington Football Team||9||4-5|
|New York Giants||9||4-5|
|New Orleans Saints||9||4-5|
How to Watch Thursday Night Football
Unlike the other two NFL primetime games – Sunday Night Football and Monday Night Football – TNF can be found in a couple of different spots during the course of the season. Here are the networks you can find the games on a week-by-week basis.
- Week 1: NBC
- Week 2-4: NFL
- Week 5-11: FOX/NFL
- Week 12: NBC
- Week 13-15: FOX/NFL
- Week 16: NFL
In short, NBC handles the opening game of the season and Thanksgiving night. NFL Network handles the rest of the games with FOX along for the ride after the first few weeks are in the books.
NBC and FOX can be found on a number of cable, satellite, and streaming packages. Local affiliates also carry the feed, so an antenna will do the trick in many areas. Availability of NFL Network can vary, so make sure it’s a part of any packages you’re looking at before signing up.
How to Stream TNF Football Live
Amazon Prime is back on board as the streaming home for a good part of the TNF schedule in 2021. For games in which FOX is handling broadcast duties – Week 5-11 and Week 13-15 – you’ll also be able to pick up the feed on Amazon, as well as some alternative coverage.
NBC is the home for TNF in Week 1 and 12, so streaming options can be found at NBCSports.com and via the NBC Sports App. For Weeks 2-4 and the last TNF game of the season in Week 16, NFL Network is the exclusive home. You can access via NFL.com online and mobile, but you’ll need valid login credentials from your provider to watch. Also, the Yahoo Sports app provides coverage of primetime NFL games.
Who are the TNF announcers?
When NBC covers the games in Week 1 and 12, it’ll be Al Michaels or Mike Tirico on play-by-play and Cris Collinsworth with analyst duties. Joe Buck and Troy Aikman handle business for the NFL and FOX portions of the schedule.
The network that’s handling the game will also take care of the pregame with NFL Network providing extensive coverage right up until kickoff. Amazon Prime has a pregame option when on board for TNF streaming, and also provides alternate feeds with various commentators and analysts.
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