The Sunday night game is a divisional showdown between the Colts and Texans, and the NFL Odds for this one favor the road Colts anywhere between -1 and -2 ½, but for this piece, the total of 44 ½ is my focus.
Key is Keenum
Keenum didn’t exactly grab the starting job by the horns in Houston in Week 7, and now after the Texans’ bye week, Keenum is once again the starter, although this time it is over a healthy Matt Schaub. If Keenum can keep his team close and get up to around the 20-point mark, the Texans will give themselves a chance to win. Keenum did have the big task of trying to play against the Chiefs in Week 7, but as we saw a week ago, Jason Campbell threw for almost 300 yards and two TDs with no turnovers against the Chiefs in Week 8.
The issue for the young Texans’ QB was sacks, as he was dropped five times against the Chiefs for a total loss of 50 yards. While the Colts don’t have much in the way of pass rushing outside of Robert Mathis, this could still be a huge issue for the Texans at home this week.
Also a key for Keenum will be his accuracy and turnovers. He was 15/25 two weeks ago for 271 yards and a touchdown, however he fumbled twice and lost one of them. As long as he hangs onto the ball and doesn’t turn it over, the Texans have a great shot at putting up points, which would in turn cash the over here.
The Sharp Pick
The Texans are only 1-6 ATS this season, and it’s looking more and more like they will miss the playoffs. At 2-5 SU, there is almost no chance unless they can win almost all of their remaining games. Indianapolis is 7-3 SU in their last ten games overall against the Texans, however the Colts are only 4-6 ATS during that same stretch.
The under has been the play for these two teams, as Indianapolis has cashed the under in eight of their last 11 games overall, and five of their last five road games. In their last five games against one another overall, the under has cashed in all five of them. However, in the last eight times these two have squared off from Houston, the total has gone over in six of those eight games.
Indy is 18-4 SU in their last 22 games overall against the Texans, however the Colts have not been very successful going into Houston recently. Over the last seven years, (going back into the Peyton Manning era) the Colts are only 1-6 ATS in their last seven trips to Houston. However the plot thickens even further, as the Texans are only 1-4 ATS in their last five home games.
For the total, I think the over has a little bit of value. The Texans’ defense is going to give up some yards and points for our NFL picks this day, especially if they don’t have their two-headed running attack healthy. Both Arian Foster and Ben Tate look like game time decisions, and if they can’t go, it’s going to leads to short possessions for the Texans, and plenty of points from Indy.
My Pick: ‘Over; 44 ½