This week Thursday night game will see two of the better teams in the NFL clash. The battle of undefeated teams will see the Houston Texans head north to Massachusetts to take on the New England Patriots. Last week the Texans took care of the Chiefs in a home game by the score of 19-12. Meanwhile, the Patriots, despite losing quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo to a shoulder injury in the second quarter, still managed to defeat the Miami Dolphins 31-24 in Foxborough.
That injury to Garoppolo is expected to have a pretty big impact on this game. The quarterback is listed as doubtful, and all indications are he will not be suiting up. That means rookie Jacoby Brissett will be under center for the club this week, on the road, against the opposing defense of the Texans. Last week, despite having the entire second half, the Patriots only had Brissett drop back to throw nine times. He did complete six of those passes for 92 yards, though, which is a nice sign.
Star tight end Rob Gronkowski is listed as questionable for this one, and it appears to be a 50/50 chance we see him in action for the first time. If Gronk does play, that would be a huge boost for New England, but would it be enough? The Houston defense is an incredibly talented unit, and you can bet they will be loading up to stop the run since that is what the Patriots will likely be doing a lot of. Brissett will have to handle the pressure as well when he drops back to pass, as the Texans sacked Alex Smith four times last week, and Jay Cutler five times the opening week.
The Houston offense is nothing to sneeze at either. I have discounted them the first two weeks, as I was not a believer in Brock Osweiler, especially behind that offensive line. But in the opening two weeks, the team has put up a 23 and 19 points. Neither scores are earth-shattering numbers, but they are both respectable. The main question I have regarding the Texans is, will they be able to do what they have been doing, now that they are finally on the road?
With the given spread, all either team needs to do is win really. Despite being on the road, I think the Texans defense will be too much for a rookie quarterback to handle. And given I think the Texans offense will struggle a bit on the road, this one could be an ugly low scoring affair. In other words, not a great game for fantasy owners to watch.
Line: Hou -1, O/U: 40.5
Pick: Texans and the under
Result: NE 27 – Hou 0, Patriots and the under
To see the spreads and over/under for each week two match-up, make sure you head over to our master sheet right here!