New Orleans Saints (4-6 SU, 4-5-1 ATS) vs. Houston Texans (5-5 SU, 5-5 ATS)
NFL Week 12
Date/Time: November 29th, 1:00 PM ET
Where: NRG Stadium
by Jeff Hochman, Professional Handicapper, jhsportsline.com
Point Spread: N.O. +3/ HOU -3
Over/Under Total: 47.5
The New Orleans Saints have two weeks to prepare for the streaking Texans, who have won three straight, in this Week 12 matchup. On 11/15/15, the Saints got clobbered by the Redskins 47-14 as 1-point road favorites. New Orleans was outgained by 160 yards and sat 3-7 ITS (in the stats) this season. The Saints have been dismal away from home going 1-4 SU and 2-3 ATS on the road. The schedule-makers were very kind to New Orleans, but they are not taking advantage of it. The Saints are the only team that won’t play back-to-back road games this season. The Texans defeated the Jets 24-17 as 4-point home underdogs. The win was especially impressive considering the Jets had three extra days to prepare, while the Texans played a physical game on Monday Night Football. Houston is 6-3-1 ITS after outgaining the Jets by 97 yards.
After starting the season very lethargic, the Texans defense is playing at a high-level right now. They surrendered 199 points through their first seven games of the season for an average of 28.4 points allowed per contest. Houston went 2-5 SU and 2-5 ATS in those seven games. In winning and covering three straight games, the Texans defense has allowed just 29 points total for an average of 9.66 points per game. Overall, the Texans’ defense is allowing 333 yards per game and 5.5 yards per play. On the flip side, the Saints’ defense is allowing 424 yards per game and a whopping 6.9 yards per play. They allowed a season-high 514 yards in losing to the Redskins before their BYE. Now you know why the most overrated defensive coordinator (Rob Ryan) in the NFL was let go.
With a new defensive coordinator and two weeks to prepare, the Houston Texans really don’t know what to expect for the Saints on the stop side of the ball. New Orleans has been awful against the pass under Ryan, allowing 293.1 yards per game which ranks 31st. Injuries to cornerback Keenan Lewis and safety Jairus Byrd has hurt the secondary. The Saints are hoping to play more of a physical style with a lot more press coverage while mixing in different schemes. New Orleans defense was too predictable under Ryan. Teams knew exactly which defense the Saints were running in non-predictable situations. I will be shocked if the Saints’ defense does’t play its best game against these Texans.
The Saints will bring in the better offense by a wide margin. New Orleans is averaging 415 yards per game and 6.2 yards per play, while the Texans are averaging 358 yards per game and 5.1 yards per play. Houston has used three different starting quarterbacks this season and the offense line has struggled in the running game. The Texans are ranked 29th in rushing yards per game and 25th in points per game. New Orleans has been steady all season on offense which is why the Over is 6-3-1 in all Saints’ games this season. New Orleans is ranked 7th in points per game and 2nd in yards per game. The Over is 6-3-1 in all Texans’ games as well.
This should be a good game to watch as this is a pivotal game for both teams. The Saints need a win to get back into the mediocre NFC playoff picture, while the Texans are tied for first, despite allowing more points (228) than they have scored (208). The Texans’ defense allowed a season-low 267 yards in last week’s upset win against the Jets. Houston will be facing a much tougher offense against a team that has done extremely well off its BYE week. The Saints are 2-1 SU and 3-0 ATS after their BYE week of late. New Orleans is also 4-2 SU and 5-1 ATS after two or more consecutive losses over the past three seasons. Houston is 5-10 SU and 5-10 ATS when the line is +3 to -3 over the last three seasons.
I wanted to see how teams (Saints) with worst defense in terms of points allowed (318) have performed after its BYE week. The numbers suggest these teams play much better with two weeks to prepare, after hearing how bad its defense has been. NFL teams that are ranked last in points allowed have gone 9-5 SU and 11-3 ATS coming of a BYE after Week 10 of the season. That’s a powerful NFL league-wide system that is cashing 85.6%. Lets not forget about the firing of defensive coordinator Rob Ryan which should also help the Saints going forward.
Jeff’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread:New Orleans Saints +3
I am taking the Saints in this one as they fall into a dynamite 85.6% winning system as mentioned above. Also, the Texans are just 5-12-1 ATS following a straight-up win and will now face a new defensive coordinator in his first game. Houston doesn’t really know what to expect from the Saints on defense. All of the previous Saints’ games on tape with Ryan running the defense are useless to the Texans’ coaching staff. I like the Saints to win this game outright!
Fast payouts, 19 and 20 point teasers, pleasers, 25 team parlays, progressive parlays, live betting, online poker and discounted odds on sides and totals! Find all this and more at the web’s BEST bookmaker: 5Dimes!