Thanksgiving Cheat Sheet: Ranking Players, Pies & More

Thanksgiving Cheat Sheet: Ranking Players, Pies & More

Welcome to the 13th annual Thanksgiving Day Cheat Sheet.

For those who are first timers, it's great to have you aboard.

Here's how to set up a one-day fantasy contest with your family and friends:

First, you'll need three to six people — ideally those with whom you're sharing the holiday. But don't let that stop you if your family doesn't want to play. Reach out on social media or target some of your friends to have some fantasy football fun.

Next, be sure to leave enough time for a quick draft that'll end before the Bears-Lions game kicks off. Should you need  to generate a draft order, either roll dice, draw playing cards from a deck or go to and use the free list randomizer.

Now that you have your competitors set, make some roster requirements and a scoring system, and, based on how many players you have, be sure to add some flex spots to add fun to your one-day league. Maybe start with (1 QB, 2 RBs, 2 WRs, 1 TE, 1 RB/WR/TE flex, a kicker and a defense) and add spots if needed. And yes, even if you're anti-kicker, consider using one, as this adds fun on such a short slate. (If you only have three teams, you can add a second QB spot as well).

Recommended scoring system:

20 pass yards = 1 pt.
Pass TD = 4 pts.
10 rush/rec yards = 1 pt.
Reception = 1 pt.
Rush/Rec TD = 6 pts.
2 pt. Conv = 2 pts
Sacks = 1 pt.
INT (for defense) = 2 pts.
Safeties = 2 pts.
All D/ST TD = 6 pts.
Kicker- FG = 3, PAT = 1)

Otherwise, if you're playing with people in one of your fantasy leagues, or if you're playing DFS, consider using the same scoring system to keep the day nice and easy.

How about an entry fee? As we know, having a little skin in the game makes it more fun, but know your audience. If you want to make this an annual tradition, make sure the entry fee is one that keeps people coming back year after year.

Of course, make sure you have an edge. I'll list my Thanksgiving Day cheat sheet below to get you started, and most important, Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

Game schedule & Vegas Odds

Bears (-4) at Lions (o/u 41.5) — FOX, 12:30 p.m. EST

Raiders at Cowboys (-7) (o/u 50.5) — CBS, 4:30 p.m. EST

Bills (-4.5) at Saints (o/u 46.5) — NBC, 8:20 p.m. EST

Weather will not be an issue at these three indoor venues.

Implied Totals

Cowboys - 29.75
Bills - 25.5
Raiders - 22.75
Bears - 22.75
Saints - 21
Lions - 18.75

Fantasy Points Allowed by Position

The following table is based on full PPR scoring and uses data from the last five weeks exclusively. If using a different scoring system, use the RotoWire Defense vs. Position tool.






Bears21.5 (13th)18.5 (19th)25.7 (27th)5.2 (7th)8.2 (25th)
Lions21.3 (9th)24.9 (31st)22.2 (15th)6.6 (12th)9.1 (31st)
Raiders21.7 (16th)21.5 (28th)18.7 (4th)10.3 (28th)7.9 (23rd)
Cowboys22.0 (19th)15.8 (6th)23.1 (18th)9.2 (25th)6.4 (13th)
Bills15.6 (1st)17.6 (13th)14.1 (1st)5.3 (8th)6.0 (10th)
Saints23.5 (24th)14.4 (1st)24.5 (26th)5.0 (5th)7.8 (22nd)

Thanksgiving Cheat Sheet


1.  Josh Allen, BUF at NO
2. Dak Prescott, DAL vs. LV
3. Derek Carr, LV at DAL
4.  Andy Dalton, CHI at DET
5. Trevor Siemian, NO vs. BUF
6. Jared Goff, DET vs. CHI (questionable - oblique)
7. Taysom Hill, NO vs. BUF
8. Justin Fields, CHI at DET (questionable - ribs)
9. TIm Boyle, DET vs. CHI


1. D'Andre Swift, DET vs. CHI
2. David Montgomery, CHI at DET
3. Ezekiel Elliott, DAL vs. LV (questionable - knee)
4. Alvin Kamara, NO vs. BUF (questionable - knee)
5. Josh Jacobs, LV at DAL
6. Mark Ingram, NO vs. BUF (questionable - knee)
7. Tony Pollard, DAL vs. LV
8. Zack Moss, BUF at NO
9. Kenyan Drake, LV at DAL
10. Matt Breida, BUF at NO
11.  Jamaal Williams, DET vs. CHI
12. Devin Singletary, BUF at NO
13. Tony Jones, NO vs. BUF
14. Jalen Richard, LV at DAL (questionable - ribs)
15. Khalil Herbert, CHI at DET
16. Godwin Igwebuike, DET vs. CHI
17. Peyton Barber, LV at DAL
18. Damien Williams, CHI at DET (questionable - calf)
19. Jermar Jefferson, DET vs. CHI (questionable - ankle)
20. Corey Clement, DAL vs. LV


1. Stefon Diggs, BUF at NO
2. CeeDee Lamb, DAL vs. LV (questionable - concussion)
3. Darnell Mooney, CHI at DET (questionable - foot)
4. Michael Gallup, DAL vs. LV
5. Hunter Renfrow, LV at DAL
6. Cole Beasley, BUF at NO (questionable - ribs)
7. Tre'Quan Smith, NO vs. BUF
8. Emmanuel Sanders, BUF at NO
9. Kalif Raymond, DET vs. CHI
10. Cedrick Wilson, DAL vs. LV
11. Allen Robinson, CHI at DET (questionable - hamstring)
12. Marquez Callaway, NO vs. BUF
13. Amon-Ra St. Brown, DET vs. CHI
14. Bryan Edwards, LV at DAL
15. Marquise Goodwin, CHI at DET
16. Deonte Harris, NO vs. BUF
17. Gabriel Davis, BUF at NO
18. DeSean Jackson, LV at DAL
19. Josh Reynolds, DET vs. CHI
20. Isaiah McKenzie, BUF at NO
21. Noah Brown, DAL vs. LV
22. Zay Jones, LV at DAL
23. Lil'Jordan Humphrey, NO vs. BUF
24. Malik Turner, DAL vs. LV
25. Damiere Byrd, CHI at DET
26. Kenny Stills, NO vs. BUF
27. KhaDarel Hodge, DET vs. CHI


1. Darren Waller, LV at DAL
2. Dalton Schultz, DAL vs. LV
3. T.J. Hockenson, DET vs. CHI
4. Cole Kmet, CHI at DET
5. Dawson Knox, BUF at NO
6. Juwan Johnson, NO vs. BUF
7. Jimmy Graham, CHI at DET
8. Foster Moreau, LV at DAL


1. Bears (at DET)
2. Bills (at Saints)
3. Cowboys (vs. LV)
4. Saints (vs. Bills)
5. Raiders (at Cowboys)
6. Lions (vs. CHI)


1. Tyler Bass, BUF at NO
2. Greg Zuerlein, DAL vs. LV
3. Daniel Carlson, LV at DAL
4. Brett Maher, NO vs. BUF
5. Cairo Santos, CHI at DET
6. Aldrick Rosas, DET vs. CHI

Side Dish Rankings

Like Bill Belichick picking just the right play from the playbook at the moment his team needs him most, don't fail to "do your job" when realizing that side dishes must be carefully chosen for the perfect meal. Each side has a role in the grand scheme, so plan this part of the feast with the highest level of discretion.

1. Sweet Potato Casserole
2. Cheesy Corn Casserole
3. Stuffing
4. Cranberry Walnut Relish
5. Honey Roasted Carrots
6. Creamed Spinach
7. Mashed Potatoes
8. Green Bean Casserole

Pie Rankings

Like running into a stacked box at the goal line, after eating all that food, we've got to plow through the pain to into the nirvana that eating the perfect pie brings.

1. Apple
2. Cherry
3. Banana Cream
4. Blueberry
5. French Silk
6. Pecan
7. Pumpkin
8. Lemon Meringue
9. Sugar Cream Pie
10. Coconut Cream

Wine Rankings

Maybe your family brings a lot of drama or stress to the feast. Let's bring some wine to the rescue. Beer might be too filling, and since you may have a lot of whining going on at the table, you can bring your own brand of "wine" to get through the noise. Indulge (and indulge more) in some fine wine while your fantasy team is piling up the points.

1. Four Vines 2019 Naked Chardonnay (Central Coast)
2. Sogrape 2019 Silk & Spice Red (Portuguese Table Wine)
3. Bogle 2019 Pinot Noir (California)
4. Gnarly Head 2019 Merlot (Central Coast)
5. Cigar Box 2019 Old Vine Hand Harvested Cabernet Sauvignon (Maipo Valley)
6. Ryer Estate 2018 Red (California)
7. Quinto do Portal 2019 Mural Reserva (Douro)
8. Rough Day 2019 Cabernet (Thracian Valley)

Happy Thanksgiving to all. Let me know in the comments where I went wrong.

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Jim Coventry
Coventry covers football for RotoWire. He started playing fantasy football in 1994 and won a national contest in 1996. He also nabbed five top-50 finishes in national contests from 2008 to 2012 before turning his attention to DFS. A published author, Coventry wrote a book about relationships, "The Secret of Life", in 2013.
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