The New England Patriots will be looking to bounce back from a 31-24 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars in their first outing of the preseason when they travel to Houston on Saturday to battle the Texans as 1-point underdogs on the NFL odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
New England surrendered the most points in a preseason game in three years in last week’s loss to the Jaguars as 3-point home chalk, and now takes a two-game straight up and against the spread losing streak in preseason action into Saturday’s matchup at NRG Stadium.
The Patriots kept a number of key personnel on the sidelines against the Jaguars, including quarterback Tom Brady, receivers Brandin Cooks and Julian Edelman, and cornerback Stephon Gilmore. Second-teamers are once again likely to see plenty of action as coach Bill Belichick seeks to address concerns with an offensive line that allowed three sacks and a defense that surrendered 447 total yards last week.
The club’s traditional commitment to limiting the preseason playing time of its stars in favor of a focus on problem areas has been a contributing factor in New England’s history of low scoring August outings. The Patriots have tallied 19 or fewer points in six of their past 10 preseason contests, and averaged 18.5 points per game over that stretch, according to the OddsShark NFL Database.
That trend comes in stark contrast to the Patriots’ high-scoring track record in recent dates with Houston. New England has averaged 34.2 points per game in six consecutive SU wins over the Texans. That includes a 27-0 win as narrow 1-point chalk with Jacoby Brissett at the helm in Week 3 of last season and the Patriots’ 34-16 lopsided victory as massive 16.5-point favorites in last January’s AFC Divisional Playoffs.
The Texans hit the field as slim 1-point chalk on Thursday after falling 27-17 to the Carolina Panthers as 2-point road underdogs last week. The loss ended Houston’s four-game SU and ATS win streak in the preseason. The Texans remain a formidable foe in preseason matchups on home turf, going 10-4 SU in their past 14, but have failed to post consecutive outright wins as preseason home favorites since 2013.
All eyes will be on rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson, who looked good under center in Houston’s loss to the Panthers, completing 15 passes for 179 yards. The Texans’ first-round selection in the 2017 NFL Draft led the Clemson Tigers to a national championship last season, and immediately emerged as a strong +550 wager to claim Offensive Rookie of the Year honors this season.
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