For the Houston-New England game this weekend, Sunday 4:30pmET, the big factor is New England’s home field advantage. Especially so, since the Patriots beat the Texans in Foxboro by a score of 42-14 in Week 14. For Houston it is gut check time because since the beginning of December the Texans have gone 2-1 at home and 1-2 on the road. Since the beginning of September New England has gone 4-1, winning 2-1 at home and capped the season off with a 28-0 home victory over the Dolphins.
The Patriots are heavy favorites to win this game with a 9 point spread and an over/under of 47.5 points
That spread seems fairly reasonable. Houston is 6-2 on the road this season and New England is 6-2 at home. Houston’s defense allowed an average of 20.7 points a game and New England’s defense allowed 20.7 points a game this season. The ultimate difference is that New England scored an average of 34.8 points this season and Houston scored an average of 26 points this season; that’s the 9 points right there.
At home the Patriots match their season average of 34.8 points scored per game but allowed an average of 22.8 points against. Houston has scored an average of 22.8 points on the road and allowed an average of 20.8 points. Therefore, the battle this weekend will be between New England’s offense that is consistent at home and the Texans’ defense that is consistent on the road.
Using the odds the score looks about 28-19 for the Patriots. The 28 points can be drawn from the average of New England’s average points scored against Houston’s average points allowed. But Houston’s score seems fall between their Week 14 score against the Patriots and their season average. Also last week the Texans scored 19 points against the Bengals who have allowed an average of 20 points per game, just like New England.
New England’s offense holds the advantage. They are 4th in the pass and 7th in the run. That compares well to Houston’s defense that is 16th against the pass and 7th against the run. That the Patriots can leverage their advantage in the pass was seen clearly in Week 14 when Brady matched his season average and threw 4 TDs.
Houston’s offense is 11th with the pass and 8th with the run which comes out favoring the Patriots who are 16th against the pass and 7th against the run. This might help explain why Houston only scored 14 points in Week 14. Houston was held to just 100 yards rushing in Week 14 which is below their season average of 133 yards rushing per game.
There seems to be a very high probability that QB Tom Brady and the Patriots can push this score beyond the 47.5 mark and past the 9 point spread. The 19 points attributed to the Texans seems well grounded, but the 28 points attributed to the Patriots seems to ignore some important factors raised in this article. One thing is for certain, the Patriots deserve to be the favored team in this game.
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