|10 HOU (-125) @ Pointsbet|
The set-up: The Texans are sizeable underdogs on Thursday night, but I think the visitors will be able to comfortably sneak in through the back door down the stretch. These two teams played twice last year. The Texans won 31-24 as a 3.5 point underdog in the first game, while the they lost 51-31 in the second (after having a 24-0 lead in the first half!) Houston went 10-6 last year and it now has a new head coach in Bill O'Brien. DeShaun Watson is gone, which is obviously a blow to the offense, but with DeShaun Watson under center and with David Johnson in the backfield and playing with a chip on his shoulder, Houston has a strong foundation to work with on the offensive side of the ball. Note Randall Cobb will have plenty of opportunity this season to fill the void left by Watson. Houston welcomes back defensive juggernaut JJ Watt, who is now fully recovered from his injury which saw him miss eight games last year.
The pick: The Chiefs went 12-4 last year en route to the Super Bowl victory. KC is once again favored to win the Super Bowl this year, but after going over it's team O/U total for seven straight years and with a target on its back each and every week and with the most difficult schedule it's faced in a decade, I think that regression is imminent. Winning makes you complacent. Does Patrick Mahomes have the drive and determination that he had before he won the Super Bowl and the biggest contract in sports history? That remains to be seen. I think Houston is filled with talent that won't be rolling over on the national stage. Outright victory? I'm not calling for it, but everything to me points to this one coming right down to the wire.
This is a 10* BLOCKBUSTER on the Houston Texans.
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