The Houston Texans need a win in Week 18 of the 2023 season to keep their playoff hopes alive, and they’ll play another team in the same position, their division rival the Indianapolis Colts.
C.J. Stroud returned in Week 17 for the Texans and promptly led them to a blowout win over the Tennessee Titans, but things will get tougher with a playoff spot in the AFC up for grabs.
Houston is a road favorite in this game, but the team hasn’t exactly thrived in that spot this season, going 0-2 against the spread.
Using the latest odds for this game, I’m going to attempt to predict the final score for this matchup. The first meeting between these teams finished with the Colts winning 31-20 in Houston.
Does history repeat itself in Week 18?
Texans vs. Colts odds, spread and total
Texans final score prediction
I’m going to take Houston to win this game with Stroud back under center.
The main reason why? The Texans’ run defense.
I’m worried about an Indy offense that relies on the run against a Texans defense that allows just 3.3 yards per carry this season – the second-best mark in the NFL.
With Stroud back, the Texans have the superior quarterback play in this game, and the Colts have shown in a loss to the Atlanta Falcons and a close win over the Las Vegas Raiders that they are vulnerable these last two weeks.
While Houston doesn’t cover the spread well as a road favorite, it doesn’t have to win this game since it is favored by 1.5 points. I’m going to take this game to end up right around the total (47.5) and the spread (Houston -1.5).
Texans win by one. Book it.
Final score prediction: Texans 24, Colts, 23
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Odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.
Find Peter Dewey's betting record here.