Week 9 betting preview


Week 9 of the NFL is here and I’ll be breaking down all of Sunday’s games from a betting perspective. Last week was strong as I went 3-1 against the spread on Recommended Wagers and added a Monday Night Football winner on The Nickel Package to finish 4-1 for the week.

I’m finding the board to be much easier to read this week than it was last week, when I had to force a couple of plays to hit my five play quota, but this week, I definitely won’t have that issue.

The Nickel Package Record: 24-14-2 ATS (63%)

As always, you can check out The Nickel Package podcast, which includes my top five plays in order of confidence for the week. Each week, Joe Fortenbaugh from the National Football Post joins me to analyze those picks and provide additional insight to the games I’ve selected. You can listen or download the MP3 file here.

Recommended Wagers Record: 29-21-2 ATS (58%)

Atlanta Falcons @ Carolina Panthers

Friday Line: Panthers -7.5, total of 44

Public Consensus: 73% on the Panthers, 94% on the over

The Pick: The wheels are falling off for the Falcons and I doubt that things are going to get better in the near future. The Falcons welcomed Steven Jackson back to the lineup last weekend but it didn’t have much of an effect on their offense. In their last two games, the Falcons have managed only 45 total yards on the ground, and those numbers aren’t likely to improve against a Panthers’ rush defense that sits second in the league in yards allowed per game. Matt Ryan is feeling increased pressure to keep the chains moving but that’s easier said than done without Julio Jones and Roddy White in the lineup. Ryan tossed four interceptions against Arizona last weekend and things aren’t likely to improve until the Falcons can figure out a way to run the ball. Meanwhile, the Panthers continue to round into form. Cam Newton, in particular, has been outstanding over the past three weeks, completing 58 of his 75 pass attempts for 685 yards and six touchdowns. The Falcons’ pass defense is awful, giving up 7.9 yards per attempt and only forcing four interceptions on the season, so Newton should be able to put together another solid outing. The Panthers will also have the luxury of running the ball effectively as Atlanta gives up a whopping 4.6 yards per carry. As I mention week in and week out, the Falcons’ defense has been an abomination since Kroy Biermann and Sean Weatherspoon went on injured reserve.

Carolina has outscored their opponents 99-28 over the past three weeks. They’re a healthy team that’s headed in a positive direction while the Falcons continue to fade away. Add in some extra rest for the Panthers and there’s no reason that this game should be close. Panthers 27, Falcons 17

The Wager: This line is a bit inflated. Carolina was -6 prior to last week’s games but that number has been driven up after last week’s performances. I’d still lean to the Panthers here but I’d like to see one more solid game out of them before I consider laying more than a touchdown with Ron Rivera’s squad. Atlanta also has strong backdoor cover potential. Pass

The Trend: Falcons are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games overall.


Minnesota Vikings @ Dallas Cowboys

Friday Line: Cowboys -10, total of 47.5

Public Consensus: 79% on the Cowboys, 95% on the over

The Pick: This is a really tough spot for the Cowboys. Aside from Dallas’ last-minute blown lead against the Lions last week, the Cowboys now have to game plan for the Vikings with a huge NFC battle against the Saints on deck next week. If you’ve heard about the ol’ “sandwich game” in the past, this is it. That being said, the Vikings are an exceedingly bad football team. Leslie Frazier hasn’t named a starting quarterback yet but rest assured, whoever’s under center for the Vikings is going to be awful. Dallas may have been burned by the Matthew Stafford to Calvin Johnson connection last week, but there’s minimal chance that they have trouble with the Ponder/Freeman/Cassel to Old Man Jennings connection. The Cowboys simply have to game plan to contain Adrian Peterson, and as we’ve seen so far this season, opposing defenses have had a much easier time slowing down last year’s league MVP. Minnesota doesn’t have much of a chance of slowing down the Cowboys’ offense either. Dallas has struggled to put together consistent drives in recent weeks, but the return of DeMarco Murray to the backfield should help with their consistency. Minnesota has given up nine rushing touchdowns this season; third worst in the league, so the opportunity will definitely be there for Murray to find the endzone in his first game back. Murray’s presence in the backfield will boost pass protection for Tony Romo, even though the Vikings don’t have much of a pass rush anyways. Romo should have plenty of time in the pocket to connect with Dez Bryant and Terrance Williams down the field as the Vikings surrender 287.9 yards per game through the air.

The Vikings have been taken to the woodshed by the Packers and Giants in back-to-back weeks, and I don’t see what’s changed to suddenly make them competitive this week. Dallas has a big advantage on both sides of the ball and should be able to get back on track after last week’s demoralizing defeat. Cowboys 28, Vikings 13

The Wager: I really want to lay the points here… really, really badly, but if there’s one team in the league that can put up an absolute stinker after a close loss, it would be the Cowboys. If I had any faith in Jason Garrett and the rest of Dallas’ coaching staff, I would make this a big play, but unfortunately that’s not the case. Pass

The Trend: Cowboys are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games after allowing 30+ points in their previous game.



New Orleans Saints @ New York Jets

Friday Line: Saints -6, total of 46

Public Consensus: 89% on the Saints, 86% on the over

The Pick: It’s so easy to look at last week’s results and assume that the Saints are going to blow out the Jets this week, but that’s why I don’t look at last week’s results. The Jets were on the road and the Saints were at home; this is a completely different environment. New York was AWFUL in Cincinnati last weekend, but teams that get blown out in the NFL tend to play for pride and rebound the following week; especially if they’re half decent teams like the Jets. Geno Smith threw two pick sixes against the Bengals last week, so it’s pretty obvious that the Jets’ coaching staff will be looking to get the ground game going early on. That shouldn’t be a difficult task against a Saints’ run defense that gives up a league worst 4.8 yards per carry. Smith should be working out of manageable situations all afternoon which should alleviate some of the pressure that Saints’ defensive coordinator Rob Ryan is sure to bring. How will the Jets slow down Drew Brees though? Well, for starters, Brees just isn’t as good on the road as he is at home. In three games away from home this season, he’s thrown for five touchdowns and three interceptions, compared to a whopping 14 touchdowns at the Superdome. Rex Ryan is a defensive-minded coach and you can be sure that last week’s debacle isn’t sitting well with him. The Jets were blown out in a Week 4 matchup in Tennessee and promptly followed that up with a monumental upset over the Falcons in Atlanta in Week 5. In fact, the Jets have followed up every one of their losses with a victory this season; a testament to their coaching staff’s ability to correct flaws in the span of one week.

It’s crazy how things have changed in the matter of a week. Two weeks ago the Jets knocked off the Patriots—the very same Patriots that beat the Saints in Week 6—but one result has everyone counting them out. This game has major upset potential. Jets 23, Saints 20

The Wager: This is my favorite play of the week. This line was Saints -3.5 prior to last week’s games and has soared a full three points based on one week’s results. Am I supposed to be impressed that the Saints beat the Bills by 18 points AT HOME? Am I supposed to write off the Jets because of one bad game? I think this is a massive overreaction. Jets +6

The Trend: Jets are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games after scoring less than 15 points in their previous game.



Tennessee Titans @ St. Louis Rams

Friday Line: Titans -3, total of 39.5

Public Consensus: 75% on the Titans, 92% on the under

The Pick: How do the Rams possibly get up for this game? St. Louis put everything they had into their Monday Night Football matchup with the Seahawks and lost in the most devastating fashion possible, unable to score a touchdown from the one-yard line late in the fourth quarter. Now they get a Titans’ team coming off of their bye week with their starting quarterback back at one-hundred percent. Not good. The Rams were only able to keep Monday’s game close because of an amazing pass rush that constantly put Russell Wilson under pressure, but that success isn’t likely to be duplicated against a Titans’ offensive line that’s given up just 18 sacks in their seven games. The Rams give up a massive 8.4 yards per attempt through the air, so Jake Locker shouldn’t have much of an issue moving the ball against a pedestrian secondary. Chris Johnson stinks but even he may have an opportunity for a big game against a St. Louis rush defense that’s relinquished eight runs of 20 or more yards this season. St. Louis will have to do something offensively this week to keep this game close, and that’s just not likely with Kellen Clemens at the helm. Clemens was atrocious on Monday night. He was lucky to get away with only two interceptions as things could have gone a hell of a lot worse. I wouldn’t trust Clemens to be able to move the ball successfully against a college defense, so I sure as hell won’t give him much of a chance against a pretty reliable Tennessee defense. The Rams will try to establish Zac Stacy on the ground (if he plays) and although the Titans are below average in run defense, they shouldn’t have much of an issue keeping Stacy contained without the threat of being beat through the air.

The Rams are in a real bad place right now. They came up short in their Super Bowl and they’ll have a hard time regrouping for this contest, even if it does come against their head coach’s former team. The wheels fell off for the Titans prior to their bye but two of those three losses came with Ryan Fitzpatrick at the helm, and the other was against a strong 49ers’ team. They’ll get back on track this week. Titans 24, Rams 13

The Wager: There isn’t much line value with the Titans being a road favorite, but this is one of the rare instances that I’ll sacrifice value to wager on the team that I’m very confident is the right side. I’m a big believer in situational plays in the NFL and the Rams are in the ultimate bet against spot this week. Titans -3 (consider holding out for -2.5 at Rams are +3 -120 in most spots)

The Trend: Rams are 1-8 ATS in their last 9 games after allowing less than 250 total yards in their previous game.


Kansas City Chiefs @ Buffalo Bills

Friday Line: Chiefs -3, total of 40

Public Consensus: 63% on the Chiefs, 55% on the under

The Pick: Ian Rapoport of NFL.com is reporting that Thad Lewis is expected to start for the Bills this week so I’ll make this selection assuming that Lewis is indeed under center for Buffalo. Lewis’ presence is key for two reasons; the first being that Jeff Tuel is a complete disgrace and the second being that the Chiefs have been awful against the pass in recent weeks. Kansas City has allowed Jason Campbell and Case Keenum to move the ball effectively in back-to-back weeks and there’s no reason Lewis can’t do the same. The Chiefs’ pass rush is outstanding and they’ll undoubtedly end some drives by getting to the quarterback, but allowing 9.2 yards per attempt to Campbell and Keenum doesn’t exactly inspire confidence. Kansas City also struggles in run defence, where they’ve surrendered 4.7 yards per carry this season; a number that’s particularly unimpressive when you account for the quality of competition that the Chiefs have gone up against this season. Kansas City has still yet to allow more than 17 points in a single game this season but I think that streak is in jeopardy this weekend. Meanwhile, the Chiefs’ dink-and-dunk offense has lost some of its luster as well. Opposing defenses are starting to play a lot closer to the line of scrimmage, forcing Alex Smith to hold onto the ball longer in an attempt to hit his crossing routes over the middle of the field. Smith took six sacks in last week’s contest against the Browns, and things are going to get rougher this week when he takes on a Bills’ defense that’s gotten to the quarterback 27 times this season. Buffalo is also pretty decent against the run, surrendering 3.9 yards per carry, so they should be able to prevent Jamaal Charles from having a huge game.

I’m not sold on Kansas City. They’re a good team, but not a great team, and winning back-to-back nail biters against a pair of third string quarterbacks doesn’t exactly instill confidence. The Chiefs have played three straight home games and now have to hit the road for a single game before their bye week; not exactly the greatest situational spot. Buffalo pulls the upset here. Bills 20, Chiefs 17

The Wager: The Bills are much better than they get credit for. I put ZERO stock into their loss to New Orleans last week; the Saints always smoke other teams in the Superdome. Records aside, these are two pretty evenly matched teams and as you know by now, I love my home dogs. Bills +3

The Trend: Bills are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games following a loss.


San Diego Chargers @ Washington Redskins

Friday Line: Chargers -1, total of 51

Public Consensus: 66% on the Chargers, 69% on the over

The Pick: The Redskins are one of the hardest teams to figure out in the league. Robert Griffin III was solid a couple of weeks ago against Chicago, and just when you thought he was starting to turn it around he laid a complete egg against the Broncos. Last week’s game is particularly concerning because Denver’s secondary has been a complete abomination this season and Griffin was only able to complete fifty-percent of his passes. RG3 should conceivably be able to torch a Chargers’ secondary that gives up an unhealthy 8.4 yards per attempt through the air, but it’s hard to predict which Griffin will show up on Sunday. The good news for the second-year signal caller is that San Diego doesn’t have much in terms of a pass rush, so he won’t be running for his life like he seemingly was on every drop back against the Broncos last week. Another piece of good news for the Redskins is that the Chargers also happen to be pretty awful against the run. Alfred Morris had a strong showing against Denver’s stout rush defense last week, which means that he should go off against a Chargers’ rush defense that’s tied for last in the league in terms of yards per carry. Unfortunately for the Redskins, football games aren’t won on one side of the ball. Washington’s defense is horrid; they give up tons of yardage both through the air and on the ground, and they’ve only managed to record 14 sacks through seven games this season. San Diego is coming off of a bye week and will have had a full two weeks to prepare for this porous Redskins’ defense. Unless Ryan Kerrigan and Brian Orakpo regain their form from years past, it’s hard to see many Chargers’ drives stalling.

This is a really tough game to call. Both offenses should have an edge over the opposing defense but both can be highly inconsistent at times. San Diego is coming off of a bye but that’s counteracted by the fact that they’re playing an early game on the east coast, a notoriously poor spot for west coast teams. I’ll give the edge to the Redskins for home field advantage. Redskins 34, Chargers 31

The Wager: I really don’t have much interest in betting this game. I can make a legitimate case for both teams in this contest and I don’t see any situational angle where I absolutely have to bet a side in this contest. Pass

The Trend: Redskins are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games against a team with a winning record.


Philadelphia Eagles @ Oakland Raiders

Friday Line: Raiders -2.5, total of 45

Public Consensus: 82% on the Raiders, 54% on the under

The Pick: Well, so much for the Eagles getting back on track. After back-to-back wins over the Giants and Bucs (I know, who cares?), Philadelphia has dropped consecutive games to the Cowboys and Giants, scoring only 10 points in the process. Much of this has to do with Chip Kelly being a complete tool but some of it can also be blamed on the quarterback carousel in Philadelphia. Michael Vick continues to suffer through the karma of killing dogs, which vaults Nick Foles back into the starting role again this week. Foles looked great in a victory over Tampa Bay but then proceeded to urinate all over himself in a loss to Dallas the following week. I don’t hold out much hope for Foles in this contest. Oakland isn’t by any means a defensive powerhouse but they’re consistently average across the board. They don’t excel in any one particular defensive category but they also don’t have any major weaknesses. Oakland will take the blueprint provided by many defenses before them and focus their efforts on shutting down LeSean McCoy, which is a lot easier with Foles under center since they don’t have to worry about the quarterback as a running threat. The good news for the Eagles is that their defense has played much better in recent weeks. With that being said, Philadelphia lacks the coaching and personnel to play consistent defense, so I’d chalk up their recent success to being more of a fluke than anything. The Eagles are one of two teams in the league that give up over 300 yards per game through the air and although Terrell Pryor struggled last week against the Steelers, he should have some opportunities to make some big plays down the field here, especially since he won’t be going up against a Dick LeBeau-led defense.

Oakland continues to be one of the more surprising (and undervalued) teams in the league while Philadelphia is just a train wreck. Chip Kelly will make a bunch of questionable calls (does this guy have any idea what to do in fourth down situations?) and the Raiders will continue to turn heads as they improve to .500 on the season. Raiders 20, Eagles 14

The Wager: I don’t think I can envision a scenario where I’d be comfortable laying points with the Raiders. Oakland is about as mediocre as it gets, and they fall into the mold of a team that I love as an underdog, not a favorite. The Eagles are also one of the few NFL teams that play better away from home so that’s something to consider as well. Pass

The Trend: Eagles are 6-17-1 ATS in their last 24 games overall.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Seattle Seahawks

Friday Line: Seahawks -16, total of 40.5

Public Consensus: 52% on the Seahawks, 85% on the over

The Pick: There really isn’t a whole lot to break down here. Seattle is coming off of their Monday night farce against the Rams, but I wouldn’t read a whole lot into that game. Dating back to last season the Seahawks have struggled mightily against the Rams for some reason, and let’s not forget that that game was on the road. Seattle now returns home—where they never lose—to take on a Bucs’ squad that’s in complete shambles. The team has essentially given up on head coach Greg Schiano as evidenced by their three straight losses to the Eagles, Falcons, and Panthers; all by at least a touchdown. The Buccaneers have virtually no chance of moving the ball in this contest as their 31st ranked offense takes on the second ranked Seahawks’ defense. Tampa Bay has averaged just 14.3 points per game this season and for some God forsake reason, they’ve decided to become a pass happy team. In their last five games, Tampa has thrown the ball at least 41 times in every single contest—some of that can be attributed to trailing in the game, and some of that can be attributed to Schiano being a complete ass hat. The Bucs only realistic chance of keeping this game close (if there is one), is to overwhelm the Seahawks’ offensive line like the Rams did on Monday. Unfortunately, Tampa Bay has only mustered 17 sacks in seven games this season which leaves that possibility highly unlikely. Russell Wilson should have much more time in the pocket this week to torch a secondary that has Darrelle Revis playing zone coverage schemes. I’m going to have an ulcer if I think about the Bucs’ coaching staff anymore so let me just leave it at that.

Tampa is in for a world of hurt this week. I think there’s a distinct possibility that they could lose this game by 50 points—I’m not joking either. The Seahawks always tend to rebound off of a loss and they have an edge in every facet of this game. Seahawks 31, Bucs 3

The Wager: I haven’t made up my mind as to whether or not I’m going to play Seattle here. I’m expecting a Seahawks beat down but I’d be stupid to ignore the fact that the Seahawks are on a short week while the Bucs haven’t played since last Thursday. I’m not sure the extra days can actually help the ignorant Bucs’ coaching staff but for now I’ll stay away. Pass

The Trend: Seahawks are 19-7 ATS in their last 26 home games against a team with a losing road record.


Baltimore Ravens @ Cleveland Browns

Friday Line: Ravens -2.5, total of 41.5

Public Consensus: 58% on the Ravens, 61% on the under

The Pick: The Jason Campbell era has begun in Cleveland. If any of the past Jason Campbell eras can serve as indicator of the future, this can’t end well. Everyone needs to calm down a little bit; Campbell was decent last week, but it’s not as if the Browns were moving the ball at will against the Chiefs. They hit some big gainers down the field but they were also vastly inconsistent at times, and only mustered 13 first downs in the entire game. The Ravens enter this game on a bye week, and they’ll have had plenty of time to prepare for Campbell. Baltimore has registered 25 sacks in just seven games this season while the Browns have surrendered the second most sacks in the league, so there’s a good chance that Campbell is going to spend a lot of this contest on his back. It’s not like the Browns can lighten the pressure on Campbell either because they have absolutely no running game whatsoever. Willis McGahee’s career is all but over and Chris Ogbonnaya is nothing but a pass catching back so expect a ton of third-and-longs for Cleveland on Sunday. The Ravens aren’t going to give up much on defense, but can their offense do anything against a solid Browns’ defense? Joe Flacco’s struggles on the road are well-documented, but I have to believe that the bye week will greatly help Flacco here. Ray Rice will also have had a couple of weeks to recover from a hip injury so there’s an opportunity for him to break out in this contest, especially when you look at his track record against the Browns. The Ravens’ offense isn’t going to move the ball consistently, but with two weeks to prepare, they should be able to put together at least a couple of solid scoring drives.

I don’t think there’s much of a difference between these two teams, but I’m so confident in John Harbaugh with two weeks to prepare that I have to give a big edge to the Ravens. Baltimore’s track record against Cleveland also can’t be ignored as the Ravens have won eleven straight contests over their divisional rival. Ravens 19, Browns 10

The Wager: We see this scenario time and time again the NFL; a backup quarterback plays well in his first start, the public jumps on the bandwagon, and that quarterback promptly proceeds to crap the bed (Nick Foles being the latest example). Campbell doesn’t have what it takes to pick apart this solid Ravens’ defense. Ravens -2.5 (I like Baltimore at anything under -3)

The Trend: Ravens are 10-1 ATS in their last 11 games following a bye week.


Pittsburgh Steelers @ New England Patriots

Friday Line: Patriots -6, total of 43.5

Public Consensus: 58% on the Patriots, 79% on the under

The Pick: If you haven’t realized it already, these aren’t the Patriots of old. New England is closer to an average team than they are to an elite team and if it weren’t for some extremely shady calls against Miami last week, they probably would have lost to the Dolphins outright on their home turf. The Patriots rank 16th in the NFL in total offense and Tom Brady has thrown just two touchdown passes in his last four games. I don’t know if Brady’s struggles can be attributed to an injury on his throwing hand or a lack of quality receivers, but clearly these struggles exist. With the exception of a 93-yard touchdown run that the Steelers surrendered last week, Pittsburgh’s defense has been extremely stout since their Week 5 bye. They’ve limited the Jets, Ravens, and Raiders to just 43 total points in their last three games without allowing any of those teams to gain more than 300 total yards. Pittsburgh has been especially solid against the run in recent weeks (removing the Terrell Pryor run from the equation) as well, which will force Brady to work out of a bunch of unfavorable situations on Sunday. The Steelers have made some positive strides on the offensive side of the ball as well. Le’Veon Bell gives Pittsburgh a legitimate threat in the running game, and although he couldn’t find much yardage on the ground in Oakland last week, he should be able to rebound against a Patriots’ defense without stud defensive tackle Vince Wilfork. The Patriots give up 4.2 yards per carry and 130.8 yards per game on the ground, so Bell should be able to move the chains rather consistently. The running game will be key for the Steelers because their offensive line simply can’t hold up in pass protection. Oakland put a ton of pressure on Big Ben last week and the Patriots will do the same as they’ve mustered 24 sacks this season. It’ll be a lot easier for Roethlisberger to convert third-and-shorts under pressure than it will be to convert third-and-longs under pressure (obviously).

All of my analysis points to this being a close game; one that Pittsburgh could possibly even win outright. New England is pretty dominant at home (they did beat the Saints at home this season), but they’re weaknesses can easily be exposed by an improving Steelers’ team. Tough call, I’ll take New England… barely. Patriots 21, Steelers 20

The Wager: Here’s the thing about betting against the Patriots—you could have the right side and still lose your wager (see Miami last week). My gut tells me that this is too many points but a close game could still results in the Patriots winning by a touchdown. At +7 I’d probably be in action on the Steelers, but right now I just don’t feel like I’m getting enough points. Pass

The Trend: The underdog is 9-2 ATS in the last 11 meetings between these two teams.


Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans

Friday Line: Colts -2, total of 44

Public Consensus: 86% on the Colts, 75% on the under

The Pick: I was on a pretty good run of picking these Sunday Night Football games until I embarrassingly sided with the Vikings last week. I have a pretty strong opinion on this game so hopefully things go differently this time around. Both teams are coming off of a bye week so we can immediately eliminate the extra preparation factor from the equation. The big news in this matchup comes out of the Texans’ camp where head coach Gary Kubiak has decided to roll with Case Keenum as his quarterback instead of the Pick-Six Plug, Matt Schaub. Keenum has been taking first team snaps for a full three weeks now, so he shouldn’t have any chemistry issues with his group of receivers. There’s doubt about whether or not Ben Tate and Arian Foster will suit up for the Texans, but it sounds like Tate is almost certain to play, while Foster could also find his way into the lineup. The Colts give up 4.5 yards per carry so this could prove to be a nightmare matchup for Indianapolis’ defense against a run-heavy Texans’ squad. Keenum also shredded a good Chiefs’ defense a couple of weeks ago, so there’s no reason he can’t duplicate that success against a Colts’ defense that’s only mediocre against the pass. The biggest concern for the Texans in this contest will be whether or not they can shut down the Colts’ offense. Indianapolis could be flat following their monumental win over Denver two weeks ago, but with a bye week in between, it’s hard to envision that scenario taking place. The main issue for Indianapolis will be the lack of Reggie Wayne in the passing game. T.Y. Hilton and Darrius Heyward-Bey are both decent options down the field, but they’ve both suffered from inconsistency in their career, and their presence won’t make up for the absence of Wayne. It’s not like the Colts’ running game will take any pressure off of Andrew Luck either. Trent Richardson has proven to be a huge bust since coming over from Cleveland while Donald Browns seems to be nothing more than a change of pace back. The strength of Houston’s defense is their pass rush and the Colts’ lack of a running game will allow the Texans to disrupt Luck on many occasions this week.

In the end, I think this is a Texans’ team that could make a big second-half run. This team isn’t much different from the one that dominated in the regular season last year and this game is essentially their Super Bowl. I think it’ll take the Colts a little bit of time to get acclimated to an offense without Wayne. Minor upset on Sunday Night Football. Texans 27, Colts 23

The Wager: I don’t care about the records of these two teams; I firmly believe the wrong team is favored in this game. Indianapolis is a good football team, but this is a road game against a divisional rival that has everything to play for. I’ll gladly take the points. Texans +2 (I’ll take any points with the Texans here)

The Trend: The Colts are 2-5 ATS in their last seven meetings in Houston.