The New England Patriots are hosting the Houston Texans in NFL Playoff action on Saturday night. The game is scheduled for an 8:15 p.m. start time and it will be televised nationally on CBS. The NFL Odds for the game have the Patriots listed as a massive favorite to pick up the win here.
New England -15.5
Total: 44 points
The Patriots are the biggest post-season favorite since at least the 2000 season and there’s little doubt they will march right to the AFC Championship game next week. For what it’s worth, double-digit favorites have covered the number in six straight instances in the NFL Playoffs and this game is going to be cold, which doesn’t bother the Patriots.
Tom Brady and the offense will have no issues moving the football down the field here, even against the No. 1 defense in the league in terms of total defense. Back in the early part of the season the Patriots beat Houston 27-0 with Jacoby Brissett running the show. Imagine the Patriots defense playing just as good in this one with Brady being the captain of the ship again.
New England has won seven straight games overall, they’re 11-1 since Brady came back and he threw for 28 touchdowns compared to only two interceptions in those 12 games.
The Patriots defense could be the biggest factor in this game, though. New England gave up the fewest points in the league this season at just 15.6 per contest, they’ve been strong against the run (third best, 88.6 per game) but they gone up against some decent passing offenses this year, but they were often ahead in most of those games and teams needed to throw the football in order to try and stay close.
Houston won’t be able to do that in this game. It’s going to be nasty cold, Brock Osweiler has proven he can’t consistently be a big-play quarterback, though he did play well enough last week against Oakland to lead the Texans to a win.
Brady will hand it off to LeGarrette Blount, throw it to all his gritty wide receivers and have no issues scoring points. But with such a big spread, will the Patriots still be able to cover the number?
With the best scoring defense in the league, at home, in cold conditions, the Patriots have an excellent chance. This one looks like it could be tough for the Texans.
Free Pick: Patriots
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