Thanksgiving Day kicks off a triple-header with the Detroit Lions hosting the Houston Texans. Are they primed to upset the AFC powerhouse or will they come up short once again? Let's take a closer look at why I think the Texans will continue to roll.
Jacsksonville Jaguars at Houston Texans Preview And Where To Watch Online Live Stream: Blaine Gabbert Battles For Job Against NFL's Stingiest Defense
When the Jacksonville Jaguars (1-8) hosted the Houston Texans (8-1) earlier in the season, they received a fairly thorough drubbing.
This week, when they head to the Texan s’ Reliant Stadium for the second leg of their AFC South divisional rivalry, there is none of that early season hope. It is now clearly a story of two teams heading in different directions.
The Texans will be looking to secure the first seed in the AFC for the playoffs. They are currently holding first place in the conference, with the Baltimore Ravens chasing. Meanwhile the Jaguars are quickly falling into the lead for the first overall pick in the draft. Currently Jacksonville and the Kansas City Chiefs are tied for last in the league and have a nose in front of the rest of the league in the race for worst.
The Houston Texans (7-1) head to Chicago to take on the Bears (7-1), in what many people are saying could be a preview of the Superbowl. Although the two teams are to and near the top of their respective conferences, they’ll need to prove they can actually win playoff games before they are touted as Superbowl contenders.
However, near the halfway point of the season, the matchup is almost certainly the most intriguing of the week. The Bears have been led by their defence, recalling the squad that challenged the Colts for the Lombardi trophy in 2006.
Of course this squad has almost completely been revamped since the Bears were NFC champions. Although, linebacker Brian Urlacher still commands from the middle of the field, his playmaking abilities have declined since his prime (his pick-six last weekend notwithstanding). Cornerback, Charles Tillman has had a half of a season that puts him firmly in the discussion for NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
Andrew Luck is coming off one of the best rookie QB performances in NFL history, while the Jaguars are wondering whether or not Blaine Gabbert can even play in this league. Does this make the Colts a no-brainer pick on Thursday night?
The look-ahead line last week had the Jacksonville Jaguars as -1 point favorites. After Week 9, the line re-opened at -3 (odds from SBRforum). As it stands now, 81% of the betting public are on the road team, but the books have remained stubborn and haven't moved the line. This shouldn't come as a big surprise because Indy haven't been the best road this season and "sharp money" has come in on the Jaguars at home all year. If the line does move to -3.5, I imagine sharps will once again take their chances with the home dog.
By the Numbers
The last time the nation saw the Houston Texans under the bright lights they were wiping themselves off the mat. In the other corner we have the surging Chicago Bears fresh off a convincing blowout. In some circles, people might see this as a fair fight, but a closer look reveals that the road team hold the advantage. Let's dig into this prime-time match-up a little further.