Houston Texans(7-1SU, 6-2 ATS) vs. Chicago Bears (7-1 SU, 5-3 ATS)
NFL Week 10
Date/Time:Sunday, November 11, 8:20pm ET
byEvergreen,Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread:Hou +1.5/CHI -1.5
You never know what kind of matchup youll get in the later season primetime games but there will be no need for flex scheduling this Sunday as we have a fantastic matchup between two Superbowl contenders.The Houston Texans travel north to take on the Chicago Bears and with both teams at 7-1, motivation will be high for each as they try to establish themselves as the dominant team in the NFL.This one has all the makings for a slugfest as each team possesses a strong defense and a smashmouth offense.Neither team is likely to go on a slide and miss the playoffs but a win for either will go a long way in the attempt to secure a bye or home field advantage.
The online sportsbooks like the Bears as a 1.5 favorite in early action but you can scout around and find a lines at -1 to -2 and the over/under total for the game is 42.
Cross conference games can be tricky to predict as neither team is often very familiar with what the other is showing but there is a common opponent from the 2012 season as both teams were handed their sole loss by the Green Bay Packers.The Pack downed the Bears in Lambeau by a 23-10 margin and the Texans fell 42-24 at home in a game dominated by Aaron Rodgers six touchdown passes.We all know that the transitive property means nothing in sports but it should be mentioned that a very good Packer defense was able to shut down Jay Cutler and Houston does have that type of defense.The Texans were gouged by the Packers passing game, something that Chicago does not possess, at least one as dynamic as Green Bay so maybe another small check mark in the Texans column there.All that being said, Chicago just dropped 51 points on the Titans and has one of the most dynamic defenses in recent NFL history, so it is no surprise that we are at a near pick-em game.
Houston has been solid this year, winning games with Arian Foster and the running game while J.J. Watt has emerged as a defensive MVP.Watt leads the league with 11.5 sacks through eight games and has an absurd 10 passes defended.Matt Schaub is more game manager now than playmaker but Andre Johnson and Owen Daniels provide good targets, especially in the play-action game and the Texans have managed a 2ndbest 29.6 points per game.The Bears stand as their toughest defensive matchup to date and Schaub and the receiving corps will likely have to shoulder a little more of the load this Sunday as Chicago will key on limiting the production from Foster.
The Bears feature roughly the same offensive strategy as the Texans as Matt Forte leads the NFLs tenth best rushing attack.Jay Cutler has thrown almost exclusively to Brandon Marshall to the tune of 59 receptions, nearly 800 yard and 7 touchdowns but again, this is a defense first team.Tim Jennings lead the team with six interceptions and fifteen pass breakups and the defense as a whole has accumulated 17 INTs and 24 sacks while allowing just 51 points per game.The Chicago offensive line is average at best and will be under fire all night, especially if they get behind and have to throw at any point.
Something has got to give as these teams are so equally matched and it could come down to who has more success in the passing game.Schaub and Co. should have a slight advantage, even on the road, as the Texan passing game is often low risk and the Bears rely so heavily on the turnover.Also, it is hard to envision Cutler having a ton of time to throw the ball, he almost never does, and that could lead to some turnovers for the Houston defense.Give the Bears a definitive edge in the special teams game as Devin Hester is always a threat if he can get his hands on the ball.
This one should be a treat for football fans as strength squares off against strength on Sunday Night but I think that Houston finds a way to win this one.They both play the type of game that will keep this one close throughout but Houston gets the edge in overall offense and they seem like the type of team that will not give the ball to the Bears defense as so many others have.It will be close, four quarter game for sure but the Texans clip the Bears by a 23-20 margin.
EvergreensPick to Cover the Point Spread:This game has way more entertainment value than wagering value as it’s as close to a crapshoot as you’ll find this season, but my lunch money bet is on the HoustonTexans.
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