Lay the Points on Texans Against 49ers in Week 4 of Preseason

Jordan Sharp

Monday, August 25, 2014 6:31 AM GMT

While it remains to be seen how much, if any, the starters will play in this game, the 49ers head into Houston for their final preseason tune-up. The NFL odds recently came out, and the sportsbooks have the Texans as -2 ½ favorites, with a total of 39 ½. 

Savage Shows Well for Houston
Right now there isn’t too much to get excited about if you’re a Texans fan, especially on the offensive side of the football. Journeyman, Ryan Fitzpatrick is far from the answer as quarterback, and while it remains to be seen whether or not he will play in this game against the 49ers, we will likely get to see rookie, fourth round pick, Tom Savage.

Savage has shown well this preseason, although it has been against weak competition. The rookie 4th rounder from Pittsburgh threw 5/6 passes for 68 yards and a game winning touchdown in Week 3 of the preseason, but even though he is the only thing to be remotely excited about in south Texas, the Texans would probably not be too wise to start the rookie.

Reports from Houston are that Savage is still behind Fitzpatrick and Case Keenum in the depth chart, however a good showing in this final preseason game could change that. No one is expecting him to take over the starting job no matter what happens in this game, but it could improve his stock to potentially take over later in the season.

Fitzpatrick looked pretty good in the Texans’ preseason game against the Falcons, however last week he regressed a lot. Fitzpatrick was 10/17, with only 80 yards passing, no touchdowns and no picks last week against the Broncos.

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The Sharp Pick
While we don’t yet know whether any of the starter will get any playing time this week, the Texans hold the advantage in the backup department. Blaine Gabbert has actually played pretty well this offseason backing up Colin Kaepernick, but he still is not the guy you’re going to look at to cover this spread for the Niners. Gabbert may be looking better under Jim Harbaugh’s tutelage, but for this game, the NFL Odds value looks to be with Houston.

Assuming Fitzpatrick doesn’t play much, if at all, Keenum and Savage should outplay the QB duo of Gabbert and Josh Johnson for the Niners. Like in their first unit defense, the 49ers have had issues stopping people this preseason, and if the Texans can get their backup running games going Thursday, they should cover this Week 4 spread.

With roster cuts looming on Monday, both of these teams are going to have less depth than they’ve enjoyed over the first three preseason weeks. In fact according to the Houston Chronicle, the Texans have already made their first round of cuts, and most of the players that were let go were on the offensive side of the football. This could indicate that the Texans are going to keep three quarterbacks this season, and it could also lead to a more consistent showing this week against the Niners. Don’t be afraid to lay the points here.

NFL Pick: Texans -3 at Bet365