Houston Texans (3-3 SU, 4-2 ATS, 4-2 O/U) vs. Seattle Seahawks (4-2 SU, 3-3 ATS, 2-4 O/U)
NFL: Sunday, October 29, 2017 at 4:05 p.m. EST
The Line: Seattle Seahawks -5.5. Total: 42.
The Houston Texans are coming off a bye week as they prepare to visit the Seattle Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on Sunday afternoon. Houston went into its break on the heels of a blowout win over Cleveland. The Seahawks returned from their by week to take care of the Giants this past weekend.
What can Brown do for the Texans?
Houston left tackle Duane Brown ended his holdout and reported to NRG Stadium on Monday. The 32-year-old Brown has two years remaining on his six-year, $53.4 million contract but does not have any guaranteed money left in the remaining two seasons. It will be up to the coaching staff to decide if he takes the field as early as this week against Seattle.
“I’m just ready to get back on the field with my brothers,” Brown explained. “I’m very ready to play. It’s my 10th year doing this, so I’m very familiar with what I need to do in order to be out there and be productive and be efficient. I’m in shape–so it’s just getting caught up to speed on the plays and terminology and I’ll be good.”
Even without Brown blocking for him, rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson has been outstanding. The 12th overall pick has led Houston’s offense to at least 33 points in each of its last four outings. Watson has thrown 12 touchdown passes compared to only two interceptions over the last three games.
Defensive swag is back
Seattle’s defense was not too much at fault in the team’s 1-2 start, although it did give up 33 points in a loss to Tennessee. The unit has has really picked up the pace, however, during a current three-game surge. Following last week’s 24-7 win over the Giants, the Seahawks are tied with Jacksonville for first in the NFL in scoring defense at 15.7 points per contest. Seattle has surrendered a total of just 244 yards rushing in the last three games, including a mere 46 such yards against the Giants. Eli Manning and company finished with only 177 total yards, marking the 18th time in head coach Pete Carroll’s tenure that the Seahawks have held an opponent less than 200 total yards in a regular-season game.
”They were really consistent; really disciplined from inside out,” Carroll said of his defensive players. “It takes great discipline to do that play after play after play. We’ve been doing this for years and this is how you play base defense and if you don’t play with great discipline, which shows up in those couple of plays that get away from you once in a while, you can’t play at this level and you can’t play a base scheme like we do. We don’t do a lot of fancy stuff. We do stuff really well and we count on our guys to execute the heck out of it.”
The Houston Texans are:
- 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games against teams with winning records
- 1-6 ATS in their last seven games following a win
- 0-6 ATS in their last six road games against teams with winning home records
The Seattle Seahawks are:
- 6-2 ATS in their last eight home games
- 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games on fieldturf
- 24-6-2 ATS in their last 32 games after gaining more than 250 passing yards in their previous game
Brown’s possible return may help the Texans, but Houston still has a problem in terms of being undermanned. Star defensive end J.J. Watt is out for the year. Linebacker Brian Cushing is suspended due to another PEDs violation. The Texans are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 against winning opponents, 0-6 ATS in their last six on the road against opponents with winning home records, and 1-6 ATS in their last seven following a win. Seattle is 6-2 ATS in its last eight at home, 8-3 ATS in its last 11 on fieldturf, and 24-6-2 ATS in its last 32 after passing for more than 250 yards in its previous outing. Don’t be surprised if those trends continue.
Pick: Seattle Seahawks -5.5
Watson, of course, is also dangerous as a runner. He has gained 202 yards on 28 carries this season. Seattle’s offense, meanwhile, has awoken along with the defense. Russell Wilson and friends have produced 113 points in their last four games after going for a mere 21 total points in their first two efforts this season. The over is 4-0 in the Texans’ last four overall, 4-0 in their last four against winning opponents, 4-0 in their last four on fieldturf, and 6-2 in their last eight following a win. It is also 5-1 in the Seahawks’ last six after allowing less than 15 points in their previous game and 4-1 in their last five after allowing less than 150 passing yards in their previous game. Look for this one to go over the total.