The Houston Texans are facing the New Orleans Saints in Week 1 action on Monday Night Football. Here is a preview of the game, odds and more before the game.
With Monday’s Houston Texans vs. New Orleans Saints game just around the corner, I wanted to take the chance to combine a few of my favorite things: football, writing and betting all in one article.
I wanted to dive in and look at all the lines and props, plus pick out the best ones to put your wagers on. In addition, this is an opportunity to preview the Monday night season opener for the Texans and Saints.
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This game will be the first time that these two teams have matched up in four years with the all-time series currently tied at 2-2. The Texans won the most previous meeting in 2015 by a 24-6 score in Houston.
The Saints have an offensive trio of quarterback Drew Brees, running back Alvin Kamara and wide receiver Michael Thomas, all three being Top 10 players at their respective positions. Last season, Brees passed for 3,992 yards with 32 touchdowns and five interceptions.
Kamara rushed for 883 yards with 14 touchdowns, plus caught 81 passes for 709 yards with four touchdowns a season ago. As for Thomas, he is entering the ’19 season coming off a year where he collected 1,405 yards with 125 receptions, including nine touchdowns.
The Texans have a trio of their own this season, but it includes quarterback Deshaun Watson, running back Duke Johnson and wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. Watson in ’18 totaled 4,165 yards passing with 26 touchdowns and nine interceptions. With the Cleveland Browns last season, Johnson rushed for 201 yards on 40 carries, but also had 47 receptions for 429 yards and three touchdowns.
Then there is Hopkins, who is one of the best wide receivers in the NFL. Hopkins finished last season with 115 receptions for 1,572 yards and 11 touchdowns.
The Texans at Saints kicks off at 7:10 p.m. ET (6:10 CT) on ESPN. Now some odds for the game:
Texans vs. Saints (-6.5)
When I checked on this game earlier this week, the Saints were seven-and-a-half point favorites. Since then, 51 percent of bets have gone the Saints’ way, but a whopping 70 percent of the money on the game is on the Texans. Now the Saints are the favorites at -6.5, according to Bovada.
The huge money shift has caused the line to drop a nearly whole point, making it an even more favorable bet if you want to take the Saints, which would be my pick.
That one point makes a huge difference. The Saints would’ve had to win by more than a touchdown to cover before, but now a touchdown is enough to cover the spread.
This one is split right down the middle for bettors including 52.5 percent of bets and 57 percent of the money on the game has the over, and I would have to agree.
The Saints have a high-powered offense that could cause issues for the Texans, especially through the air. The Texans’ offense, while not quite that of New Orleans, should still be able to put up some points against what is a good defense for the Saints.
Rushing Attempts – Deshaun Watson, O/U 6.5
The strength of this Saints defense is definitely their secondary. The front seven of New Orleans is good, but not nearly as good as the defensive backs and safeties.
That being said, I do expect Cameron Jordan to get some pressure on Watson a couple of times. I think Watson will take a couple of sacks and run a few times, but I don’t see him scrambling more than four or five times.
Receptions – Alvin Kamara, O/U 5
This week’s Texans vs. Saints game will be decided in the air. Both teams have decent run games, but the aerial offense is the strength of both sides.
That being said, I believe Kamara will have a huge impact catching passes out of the backfield. I think he’ll pick up at least five or six receptions, but I wouldn’t at all be surprised to see him catch significantly more and have a much larger role than expected.
Overall, this should be a good game between two playoff contenders. I don’t believe the Texans have what it takes to overcome the Saints for the win, as the Saints should be a Super Bowl contender once again this year. The Texans should hang in the game for the full 60 minutes and give them a fight, making for an exciting night of football.