Thursday Night Football Prediction

Posted: 12/05/2013 by levcohen in Football

While this Thursday Night game is between two very bad teams that are already out of the playoff race, it does have a huge impact on a different race: the race for the #1 pick, and presumably the rights to Teddy Bridgewater (although a lot will change between now and the draft). The Texans, at 2-10, are now owners of the worst record in football, while the Jaguars, 3-9, are one of a glut of teams with 3 wins. If Jacksonville wins this game, the Texans will be well on their way to the top pick. But if Houston wins, as I’m predicting, the race for the #1 will have no end in sight.

Houston Texans (2-10, 3-9) at Jacksonville Jaguars (3-9, 4-8):
Line: Texans favored by 3
Over/under: 42.5
My prediction: Texans- 26, Jaguars- 17.. These two teams met just two weeks ago, in a Jaguar win in Houston. The spread for that game was 10.5. Given that and another win for the Jags and another lose for the Texans and this line looks pretty legit. But I’m not buying it for a few reasons. First is that the Texans don’t seem to be tanking. They haven’t lost a game by more than a score since week 7. Second is that the Texans coaches are playing for their jobs, so they desperately need this game. Third has to do with both home fields. Normally, home field advantage is considered to be about 3 points (give or take), and that could be as high as 5 points for a team like the Seahawks or Saints, who have great homefield advantages. But the Texans and Jaguars both have terrible home crowds and aren’t really given an advantage at home. I’d say the homefield advantage is about a point, no more (these two are a combined 1-11 at home and 4-8 on the road). So, even if you include two points for the change in perception of these teams since that last matchup and another two for the change in homefield, the line should be no less than 6.

Texans cover
Over

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