New England Patriots (8-3 SU, 6-5 ATS) vs. Houston Texans (2-9 SU, 2-9 ATS)
NFL Week 13
Date and Time: Sunday, December 1, 1:00pm
Where: Reliant Stadium, Houston, Texas
by Bob, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: NE -7.5/HOU +7.5
Over/Under Total: 47
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I seem to get assigned a lot of these type matchups from my guys at Predictem.com. Here is yet another AFC showdown that before the season started, many would think was going to be one of the biggest and best games of the year. Now, we have a road team as more than a touchdown favorite. The Patriots will head to Houston as a 7.5 point favorite over the highly disappointing Texansor as I like to call them, the AFC version of the Atlanta Falcons. This game has all the ingredients to be a laugher, but lets not get too ahead of ourselves, we have seem quite a few home underdogs pull of some surprises as of late. Can Houston make the Patriots the latest victim of this, or will Tom Brady and New England keep on rolling through the conference?
The Patriots are coming off a huge win in what was one of, if not the most exciting game of the NFL season. Peyton Manning and the Broncos went into Foxborough and took a 24-0 lead into the locker room at the half, only to see Tom Brady and the Patriots storm back and win it in overtime. With all the talent that the Patriots lost this offseason, I really didnt think they would be a true Super Bowl contender. Boy was I wrong. They came out of the gate a little slow, but the Patriots now look like the Patriots of old putting up points and winning big games. How are the Patriots winning so many games? Well, they have the 9th ranked pass defense in all of football, the 14th best passing offense, and shocking enough, a running game that has now cracked the NFLs top ten rushing attack gaining over 125 yards per contest. This team is for real. I think we will see another deep January run for New England, and if they get some games at home, I really dont know who will be able to stop them
The Texans came into this season as one of the favorites to make a run for the Super Bowl. They started 2-0, but since that time, they have crashed and burned. Houston has lost 9 straight games and do not appear to be getting any closer to winning. The only thing they are playing for now is the top pick in the NFL draft. It looks like Atlanta, Jacksonville, and Houston are all trying to make a case for this. Of course I see Atlanta being the favorite, but that is beside the point. Just being mentioned in that conversation is shameful based on the expectations set by the organization this offseason. I have written on Houston a few times this season and I continue to say the same thing about them: Statistically, they are not a bad team. They are the best in the entire NFL against the pass, they rank top ten in passing yards, and they are even sitting in the top fifteen of the league running the ball.how on earth are they losing? Is just doesnt make sense. But in the case of the NFL and professional sports in general, not everything makes sense. I keep waiting for this team to come out of its shell and put the beatdown on some teams, but after last weeks loss to Jacksonville, I have given up on them.
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Bobs Pick to Cover the Point Spread: I hate taking road favorites in the NFL, it is the kiss of death, especially when I am the one laying money on it. The problem is, in most cases it just seems too easy which is what scares me about this game. It is easy to look at this contest and think to yourself oh, yea, the Patriots are gonna kill them. Nine times out of ten, I would go running the other way and lay a bet on Houston simply because it is the smart and contrarian thing to do. However, just like the Falcons game that seems too easy this week, I am going with the public. The Pats are rolling, and I certainly do not see the Texans being the ones to slow them down. Take New England minus the points. PICK: PATRIOTS -7.5