Texans at Patriots Predictions
By Josh McSwain
Ryan Reynolds, Staff Writer
A Houston Texans victory over the New England Patriots Saturday night would make for one of the biggest playoff upsets in NFL history, but will it happen? … Most likely not.
When the Divisional Round matchups were announced last weekend, Vegas opened up with the Texans being 16-point underdogs, which is the biggest point spread in a playoff matchup since 1998. However, if the Texans want to beat the odds and take down the AFC’s strongest competitor they must: develop a consistent ground game with RB Lamar Miller and the Texans’ No. 1 ranked defense must limit the dynamic duo of QB Tom Brady and RB LeGarrette Blount.
Houston’s main priority on offense should be to get Miller going early. The Texans are 3-1 when the first-year Texan rushes for 100 yards or more; so being able to establish a run game will make the offense more dynamic and it will also open up the passing game for QB Brock Osweiler. Being able to accomplish this goal will be no easy task. New England’s defensive front as been stellar against the run all season. They are allowing an average of 88.6 rushing yards per game (third best in the NFL).
On the other side of the ball, the Texans’ No. 1 ranked defense must limit the Patriots high-scoring offense, which ranks third in the NFL averaging 27.6 points per game. New England’s execution on offense has been flawless all season both on the ground and through the air. With that being said, the Texans’ have to know that if the game turns into a shootout, game over.
Houston’s offense just isn’t capable of scoring more than 30 points in a single game, which is why the pressure of winning is put on the Texans’ defense. If they play well and limit Brady and Co., it’s possible the team could travel back to Houston with a divisional round win under their belts.
In Conclusion: The Houston Texans have never won in Foxborough, Mass. In fact, every time the Texans go on the road to play the Patriots they get embarrassed. Houston was already blanked earlier this season at Gillette Stadium 27-0. Brady, Blount and the stout defense of New England will hold their own Saturday night. Thus, the Pats advance to the AFC Championship for the sixth straight time. The Patriots take the cake over the Texans 34-10.