NFL Week 6 Pick: Cleveland Browns at Houston Texans

Matthew Jordan

Monday, September 4, 2017 10:22 PM UTC

Monday, Sep. 4, 2017 10:22 PM UTC

The future of the Cleveland Browns is largely tied to the fortunes of the Houston Texans this season after the franchises made two offseason trades. Survivor Pick: Houston.

Cleveland Browns at Houston Texans (-9.5, 47)

Back in March, the Texans traded former starting quarterback Brock Osweiler to Cleveland for Houston’s 2018 second-round pick. That was a complete salary dump as the Texans were hoping to sign free-agent Tony Romo, but he decided to retire and go into announcing. Then at the draft, Houston traded the No. 25 overall pick and its 2018 first-rounder to Cleveland for the Browns’ No. 12 overall pick. The Texans took former Clemson star quarterback Deshaun Watson. That looks like a brilliant move thus far as Watson is an Offensive Rookie of the Year favorite and is second in the NFL with 12 touchdown passes. Cleveland? Another year, another mess at quarterback and it’s expected that 2016 fifth-round pick Kevin Hogan will make his first NFL start in this one. Hogan would be the Browns’ 28th different starting quarterback since the franchise rejoined the NFL in 1999. That’s the most in the NFL. Think Cleveland regrets passing on Watson at No. 1 overall and then at No. 12? Houston has won five of the past six meetings and this really shouldn’t be close, but make sure you get this at 9.5 (may have to buy it down as the line is rising) instead of 10 just in case.

  • Browns are 6-24-1 ATS in their last 31 games overall.
  • Texans are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss.
Free NFL Pick: Texans -9.5Best Line Offered: Bookmaker

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How good has Watson been? He had four TD passes and a rushing score in a Week 4 blowout of Tennessee, and then he threw five TD passes in Sunday night’s shootout loss to Kansas City. Watson became the fourth rookie quarterback in NFL history to pass for five touchdowns in a single game and the third to do so without throwing an interception. His 12 touchdown passes are the most by any rookie QB in his team’s first five games of a season. Remember, too, that Watson didn’t even start Week 1. Tom Savage did. Meanwhile, the lowest-rated QB in the NFL is Browns second-round rookie DeShone Kizer. He was pulled from last Sunday’s loss to the Jets and replaced with Hogan, who did look very good in nearly leading a comeback. But Hogan has no weapons around him other than maybe rookie tight end David Njoku. Houston lost defensive stars JJ Watt and Whitney Mercilus to season-ending injuries in Week 5, but I still think that unit largely shuts down the Browns. Thus the under call.

  • Under is 9-2 in Browns last 11 games following a straight up loss.
  • Under is 8-1 in Texans last 9 games following a ATS loss.
Free NFL Pick: Under 47Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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