The bye weeks are officially done, which means we’re nearing the end of the regular season. From here on out, the primetime games will feature teams that either are fighting or have clinched a playoff spot. We start off with Sunday Night Football in Houston, where the 7-4 Texans will host the 10-1 Patriots. After winning their respective games in Week 12, both teams are at the top of their divisions. There’s no shortage of importance here, so let’s jump right into it.
In their 16 years of existence, the Texans have only defeated the Patriots once. New England has won the last eight, two of which were in Houston. The dominance may be in danger, though. Yes, the offense ranks fifth in points per game, but over the past three outings it hasn’t surpassed 20 points once. That hasn’t happened to the Pats since 2011. Instead, they’ve been relying on the outstanding defense, allowing the fewest points per game in the league. Although, with the flu running its course on New England’s roster, health could be a concern for those affected.
On the flip side, the Texans have only failed to reach 20 points in a game three times this season. Deshaun Watson (DraftKings Showdown salary $11,000) became the second player ever to have 20+ TD passes, five or more TD runs and a 100+ passer rating through the first 11 games of the season. With Will Fuller ($8,400) back in the receiving corps last week, Houston went for 397 total yards, now ranking seventh in yards per game. Stephon Gilmore is likely to shadow DeAndre Hopkins ($10,400), so we may get a heavy dose of Fuller.
While it’s not likely that we’ll see a beatdown like Baltimore put on Houston a couple weeks back, I do think the Texans will have their struggles against this generational defense. For the first time this season, Tom Brady ($11,200) will have the benefit of playing indoors. He should have his full repertoire of receivers by Sunday night, as well. I’ll take the Patriots to cover.
All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.
Patriots at Texans
Point Spread: Texans +3
Total Points: 46
Money Line: Patriots -167; Texans +148
Overall: Patriots 10-1; Texans 7-4
ATS: Patriots 7-4; Texans 5-6
O/U: Patriots 3-8; Texans 4-7
- Ryan Izzo (TE) - OUT
- Kyle Van Noy (LB) - Questionable
- Byron Cowart (DL) - Questionable
- Matthew Slater (WR) - Questionable
- Mohamed Sanu Sr. (WR) - Questionable
- Julian Edelman (WR) - Questionable
- Phillip Dorsett II (WR) - Questionable
- Jason McCourty (CB) - Questionable
- Nate Ebner (DB) - Questionable
- Marcus Cannon (OL) - Questionable
- Ja’Whaun Bentley (LB) - Questionable
- Isaiah Wynn (OL) - Questionable
- Joejuan Williams (CB) - Questionable
- Dont’a Hightower (LB) - Questionable
- Stephon Gilmore (CB) - Questionable
- Jermaine Eluemunor (OL) - Questionable
- Jamie Collins Sr. (LB) - Questionable
- Patrick Chung (S) - Questionable
- Carlos Watkins (DE) - OUT
- Tytus Howard (G/T) - Doubtful
- Angelo Blackson (DE) - Questionable
- Gareon Conley (CB) - Questionable
- Brennan Scarlett (OLB) - Questionable
Notable Prop Bets
- Sony Michel to have more rushing yards than Carlos Hyde: +110
- Tom Brady over 25.5 pass completions: -106
- Will Fuller over 4.5 receptions: +106
- Deshaun Watson under 27.5 rushing yards: -112
- The Patriots have won 15 of their last 16 games.
- The Texans have failed to cover the spread in each of their last six Sunday night games.
- Each of the Texans’ last seven home games against AFC opponents have gone UNDER the total points line.
- The Patriots have won the first quarter in 10 of their last 11 games against AFC opponents.
- Julian Edelman has scored a touchdown in three of the Patriots’ last four games in December.
- James White has scored a touchdown in five of the Patriots’ last six regular season night road games.
- DeAndre Hopkins has scored two touchdowns in three of the Texans’ last four night games.
Odds and lines subject to change. See website for actual odds.
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