Sep 14, 2014; Oakland, CA, USA; Houston Texans cornerback Kareem Jackson (25) returns an interception against the Oakland Raiders in the second quarter at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports
Kansas City, at Carolina, Tampa Bay
Prediction: Kansas City will be a tough game with Jamaal Charles healthy. Travis Kelce is about to have a huge year and not having a great pass protecting linebacker could be a problem. However, I think Arian Foster and the defense controls the game and squeaks by. The point spread currently sits at around 2 points in favor of the Texans. Texans win 20-17.
Playing in Carolina is never a good matchup. Cam Newton should be healthy and will be too much for the Texans on the road. Jonathan Stewart is inline for more touches and I believe he is a very underrated runner. Both Kansas City and Carolina play very similarly to the Texans and both should be close games. Slight edge to the Panthers. 21-17.
Tampa Bay was the worst team by record last year but lost a ton of games by just a few points. They were not the worst team in football by any means last year. Jameis Winston will clearly have his ups and downs this year, but has the surrounded cast to win the Rookie of the Year award. I don’t bet on Rookie quarterbacks on the road, especially against a top two or three defense. Texans 24-17.
Record for the month: 2-1
at Atlanta, Indianapolis, at Jacksonville, at Miami
Prediction: Atlanta will be one of the most improved teams this year simply for the coaching change. The defense is improved with a couple signings and draft picks, but ex-Seahawks defensive coordinator will take the defense to a new level. The offense is the same but still a good one. Tough matchup on the road results in a loss. 27-21.
The Texans can only hope to split the season series with the Colts, who I believe have a chance to win 12 games this year. If the Texans are going to win a game, it will be this one. The Colts should be slight favorites to win this game while on the road. My heart says Texans win, but my brain says they don’t. Colts over Texans 24-20.
The Jaguars are not a good football team yet. Blake Bortles played horribly last year under some tough conditions. Allen Robinson will be his best wide receiver and has a chance to surprise a lot of football fans. Adding T.J. Yeldon will help Blake Bortles but still won’t be enough. It is tough luck that the Jaguars first round pick is out for the year with an ACL injury. Texans win 27-10 in a confidence booster.
The Miami Dolphins are one of my favorites teams going into 2015. Ryan Tannehill looks like an above average quarterback to me and has the supporting cast to make magic. Jordan Cameron is a top 10 tight end when healthy, Kenny Stills is a much better deep threat than Mike Wallace was last year, and DeVante Parker will be dangerous. The Miami defense is also stingy but perhaps has a weakness in the secondary. This is a game to put DeAndre Hopkins on the elite wide receiver map. Huge game coming for No. 10. However, I think the difference between Ryan Tannehill and Brian Hoyer/Ryan Mallett is going to decide who wins. Dolphins grab a road win in HOU. 24-20
Record for the month: 1-3
Record overall: 3-4
Tennessee, BYE WEEK, at Cincinnati, New York Jets, New Orleans
Prediction: The Titans are the worst football roster in the NFL. Marcus Mariota is in for a long season unfortunately. His wide receivers are some of the worst in the game and Bishop Sankey was one of the worst runners last year. David Cobb will probably take over running back duties by this point in the year. The Texans are a better coached team, the home team, and have much better talent. Easy win. 31-14.
The Bengals are known for not winning playoff games. But they get to the playoffs quite frequently. Andy Dalton is one season removed from a top 5 fantasy football finish and will enjoy a healthy A.J. Green. More importantly for the offense, Jeremy Hill looks like a top 10 running back in the league with an arrow pointing up. The defense always is pretty good but not as strong this year as in the past. Tough matchup on the road results in a loss. 17-14.
This very well could be a welcome home game for Ryan Fitzpatrick. The quarterback job is up for grabs as of now between Geno Smith and Ryan Fitzpatrick. This will be a good game for Texans first round pick Kevin Johnson to be thrown in on a lot of downs. I think the Texans can jump out to an early lead and force the Jets to use Brandon Marshall, Eric Decker, and Rookie deep threat Devin Smith a lot. If the Jets front 7 isn’t too much for the Texans, this should be a win. 20-10.
The Saints were bad last year. They might have gotten worse this year by moving on from Jimmy Graham and Kenny Stills. They will get Brandin Cooks back for the Injury Reserve list and added C.J. Spiller via free agency. The Saints are a tough team to gauge. They could return to winning 10+ games per year or stay in this funk they were in last year. I will stick with the home team here. Texans win 24-21.
Record for the month: 3-1
Overall record: 6-5
at Buffalo, New England, at Indianapolis, at Tennessee
Prediction: This is where the wheels might fall off for the Texans. These next three games are very tough. Winning games in Buffalo in December is very tough. The Texans don’t play in snow often, but there is a decent chance this game is played in severe conditions. Buffalo might have the second best defense in the NFL and added a better coach and Lesean McCoy. The Bills and the Texans are very similar teams with great running backs, superstars in the making at wide receiver, bad quarterbacks, and elite defenses. Bills come up on top. 14-13.
Tom Brady will be a man hunting after his suspension. If the Patriots are battling for a playoff spot late in the year, this will be an impossibly game to win. I am not sure who plans on defending Gronk. It is tough to bet against the Brady and Gronk combo. Patriots win 28-17.
This is debatably the toughest game on the schedule. Anything can happen but I think the Colts are a much better offense. The Colts can give up leads because the defense isn’t great but still good enough with Andrew Luck on the other end. Colts win. 28-20.
Like I mentioned before, I am not a fan of what the Titans have put together for 2015. Easy win again. 24-14.
Record for the month: 1-3
Overall record: 7-8
Prediction: This will be a must win game for the Texans if they want a playoff bid. It will be similar to last years season finale where the Texans win the game, but the other things needed to happen to get the Texans to the playoffs won’t align. Good season in general for a team without a quarterback but will continue to haunt the Texans until they find just an average quarterback.
Record for the month: 1-0
Overall Record 8-8
Next: Click here for our next prediction...