Even though last Thursday was the official kickoff of the season on Thursdays, tonight is the first real edition of Thursday Night Football. Both teams are on short rest and both have some severe question marks heading into Week 2. However, there is some uniqueness to this game that could lead to a couple nice NFL Picks.
It’s official. Deshaun Watson is the Texans starting quarterback. We kind of saw this coming after Tom ‘Slow Motion’ Savage was decimated by the Jaguars’ defense in Week 1, and even though Watson is coming into a game on short rest with a nicked up ankle, he is leading the team on the road into Cincinnati.
There’s no going back from this either. Bill O’Brien has been pulling the puppet strings at quarterback ever since he got to Houston. However, after drafting Watson in the first round, there is no chance the Texans go back to Savage in this one. I don’t care if Watson throws 2 picks and is down 28-0 at halftime.
The defense for the Texans will have to step up for the young quarterback, and I think they will. However, with the Bengals favorite so much, and the lines continuing to go up in favor of the Bengals, to me, this is the perfect opportunity to bet a teaser for this one.
The Sharp Pick
Early season Thursday Night Football games are usually one-sided and pretty bad to watch. Last season in Week 3 Thursday night, the Texans went into New England and got blitzed 27-0, and I could see this game going somewhat similarly.
The Bengals’ defense played ok last week and their offense should get a little better after playing one of the best defenses in the NFL in Week 1.
On the flip side though, I’m a little worried about the Texans offense. On the road against a good defense and on a short week is not how you want your first round pick to get his first NFL start. Who knows, Watson could surprise everyone in this game. However, I think it’s more likely he looks like a rookie as much as he flashes he undeniable talent.
Considering that five of the first seven Thursday night games last season finished with 36 points or less, I like the under along with a bet on the Bengals in a 6-point teaser. Even though lower scores early on in Thursday night games are becoming rarer, this game screams something like 23-17, or 30-10 as the final.My NFL Pick: TEASER: Bengals PK & UNDER 44 @ Pinnacle