Add 'Over' to NFL Picks in Texans vs. Colts

Jason Lake

Tuesday, December 10, 2013 2:44 PM GMT

So much for Koobstrong. The Houston Texans have a new head coach for Sunday’s game with the Indianapolis Colts, and the NFL lines are in Indy’s corner.

Jason’s record on his final NFL picks for 2013, up to December 9 inclusive:

35-29-2 ATS

1-1 ML (+0.71 units)

8-14-1 Totals

Losing once to the Jacksonville Jaguars is bad enough. Twice? That will apparently cost you your job, even if you’re a local hero. The Houston Texans have fired head coach Gary Kubiak; defensive coordinator Wade Phillips will be under the headset for Sunday’s matchup (1:00 p.m. ET, CBS) with the Indianapolis Colts, who have fallen into a zigzag pattern since beating the Texans back in Week 9. Do you believe in patterns?!

Maybe not this kind of pattern. But if there’s anything to it, the Colts are due for a win this weekend, and the NFL betting lines have Indianapolis laying six points at Lucas Oil Stadium with a total of 45.5. Our very early consensus reports show 70 percent support for the Colts – and 100 percent support for the OVER, which is 6-1 in Indy’s last seven games and 5-1 in Houston’s last six. Now that’s a trend I can get behind.

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Future Endeavored

Full disclosure: I had the Texans last week, figuring that they’d rally behind Kubiak after his mini-stroke, in much the same way that the Colts rallied behind fallen head coach Chuck Pagano after he was diagnosed with leukemia last year. And also to help keep Kubiak from losing his job at the end of the season. Yeah, that didn’t work out. Reports suggest that Texans owner Bob McNair was so cheesed off after his team lost 27-20 to Jacksonville (+3 at home) that he fired Kubiak sooner rather than later.

I don’t think we can blame Kubiak for the way Texans (2-11 SU, 3-10 ATS) have been injured left, right and center this year. But that doesn’t make his dismissal a bad thing in the short-term world of football betting. At the very least, it’s a wake-up call to the remaining players, who committed a team-record 14 penalties for 177 yards against the Jaguars. It also comes hand-in-hand with the firing of special teams coach Joe Marciano, who oversaw the No. 30-ranked unit in the NFL according to the efficiency stats at Football Outsiders.

Also make sure to check out our:

NFL Picks: Week 15 Betting Odds Report

Colts Mild

The Colts (8-5 SU, 7-6 ATS) are also shaking things up a bit, having fallen into the aforementioned zigzag pattern following their outstanding 6-2 start at 5-3 ATS. They’ve demoted RB Trent Richardson (2.9 yards per carry), who came over from the Cleveland Browns in exchange for a first-round pick and has been nothing short of a disappointment. His minus-55 rushing DYAR through Week 13 was ahead of only Cleveland’s Willis McGahee (minus-72) and the underperforming Baltimore combo of Bernard Pierce (minus-101) and Ray Rice (minus-142).

While Donald Brown (5.2 yards per carry) has performed much better for the Colts this year, Richardson’s woes point to a larger malaise with the Indianapolis offensive line. ESPN scouting analyst Matt Williamson used the word “terrible” to describe the interior combo of guards Mike McGlynn and Hugh Thornton. The Colts didn’t get anything going on the ground last week against the massive Cincinnati Bengals defensive line, losing 42-28 as 7-point road dogs.

The Texans have been pretty bad at just about everything football-related this season, but they’ve still got reigning Defensive Player of the Year J.J. Watt playing left end, and they were No. 12 in rushing defense going into Jacksonville – although RB Maurice Jones-Drew was able to run for 103 yards on just 14 carries. Will the Texans get their heads back into the game this week? Quite possibly. I’d rather pound the NFL totals while we wait and find out.

NFL Pick: Take OVER 46 (+102) at Pinnacle