Houston Texans vs. Jacksonville Jaguars Matchup Preview (10/11/20): Betting Odds, Depth Charts, Live Stream (Watch Online)
In this AFC South matchup, the Houston Texans will stay at home to play the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Houston Texans are winless this season after starting the year against three of the toughest teams in the NFL with the Chiefs, Ravens, and Steelers. They are coming off of a tough loss against the Minnesota Vikings to make their record 0-4. The Jacksonville Jaguars started the season hot, by getting their first win against one of the best defenses in the NFL, the Indianapolis Colts. Since then, they have lost their last three games, two against the Bengals and the Dolphins, who are bottom-tier NFL teams this year. For odds movement and full matchup history, visit the Houston Texans vs. Jacksonville Jaguars Matchup Page.
Date: Sunday, October 11th, 2020
Time: 1:05 PM ET
Location: NRG Stadium – Houston, Texas
TV Coverage: CBS
Texans vs. Jaguars Live Stream
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Houston Texans: Questionable to play: Bradon Dunn, Benardrick McKinney, Laremy Tunsil, Buddy Howell, Dylan Cole, Cullen Gillaspia, Peter Kalambayi, Jordan Akins
Jacksonville Jaguars: Questionable to play: Josh Allen, Laviska Shenault Jr., Will Richardson, C.J Henderson, Brandon Linder, Cam Robinson, Myles Jack, IR: D.J Hayden
Houston Texans Analysis
The Houston Texans have started their season facing three of the most difficult teams in the NFL. The Chiefs, Ravens, and Steelers are certainly a wake up for the beginning of the season, especially in 2020. After suffering their fourth loss to the Minnesota Vikings, Bill O’Brien was relieved from his coaching and general manager duties. This move is coming pretty early in the season, but I’m sure 3xDPOY J.J Watt can attest to the necessity behind the move, after reportedly starting a shouting match in practice last week. They look to grab their first win of the season against divisional opponent Jacksonville Jaguars.
The Texans’ total offense has been struggling against some very tough defenses. They have scored on average 20 points per game and have only averaged two touchdowns per game. The scariest statistic for this offense is their time of possession, as they hold the ball an average of 24:15 for the whole game of 60 minutes this season. While they have faced some very tough defenses through four weeks, they will need to take advantage of the Jaguars’ weak defense in week five.
In terms of passing, Deshaun Watson has had a tough time trying to pass behind this atrocious offensive line. He has been sacked the most times of any other quarterback in the league at 16 times total through four weeks. His passer rating is in the middle of the pack at 98.2, which is nerve-racking for a team that passes 65% of the game. He is outside the top ten quarterback rankings in yards, touchdowns, and completion percentage; these are categories he is used to being within the top ten of all quarterbacks. The Texans will have an easier time against a Jaguars defense that has not produced a lot of sacks this season, so Deshaun should be able to produce.
The Texans’ rushing offense is essentially non-existent in the NFL since they hardly run the ball. The Texans rank second to last in the league in rushing attempts, which could be a factor of the offense hardly being on the field and the team consistently being down in games. However, David Johnson could use some more love considering the Texans traded away arguably the league’s best receiver for him last year. Their 73.5 rushing yards per game is seriously tough to look at, but they should be able to incorporate their running backs next week.
The Texan defense has seen the league’s best offenses through the first two weeks of play against the Chiefs and the Ravens. But, letting up 31 points to an average Viking offense last week is a bit concerning for this defense. To be honest, the Texans should be concerned that they are the only team in the NFL without a single takeaway through the first four weeks of the season. The Jaguars offense, while below average, has performed well against other teams and knows how to score. The Texans will have to scheme well against the Jags to give their offense a chance next week.
Houston Texans Depth Chart
Jacksonville Jaguars Analysis
The Jacksonville Jaguars surprised the NFL after upsetting the Colts in week one of the season’s startup. But, they have lost to two subpar teams after that outing against the Bengals and the Dolphins. Gardner Minshew has been performing well for them along with undrafted rookie running back James Robinson. The most concerning aspect of the Jaguars is the number of points the defense gives up to very below-average offenses. Last week they gave up 33 points to the Bengals and the week before they gave up 31 points to the Dolphins. They will look to get back on track next week against the Texans.
The Jaguars’ total offense has not been as disappointing as their fans may have thought coming into the season. They have put up close to 24 points per game and are a solid offense in the red zone, averaging a score on 71% of their trips. The Jaguars are mostly weak on the offensive line, as they have let their quarterback get sacked 13 times this season.
Gardner Minshew has led a decent offense that loves to pass the ball and on average will do that 37 times per game. Minshew is impressively ranked fifth in completion percentage, rocking 72% completed passes per game this season. He is in the top ten quarterbacks for yards, touchdowns, and completions, which is much more impressive than critics were led to believe coming into the season. He will need to bring that same energy into next week against the Texans to improve on their divisional record.
With the interesting departure of Leonard Fournette and loss of Ryquell Armstead due to COVID-19, their run game has heavily relied on James Robinson to take on most of the carries. Robinson is averaging 15 carries per game and has picked up 285 yards and three touchdowns from that, ranking as a top-ten running back in the league. He will be a key part of the Jaguars offense against a Houston defense that has averaged the most opponent rushing attempts this season.
The Jaguars’ defense has not been helping out the offense that has been producing for them. The defense has allowed around 400 total yards to their opponents and close to 30 points per game, so far against mediocre offenses. They get passed against the least in the NFL as a defense, but let up an average of 261 passing yards and two passing touchdowns on average which ranks below-average in the league. They consistently fail to put pressure on opposing quarterbacks, ranking third to last in team sacks this season. That is what the Texans have been struggling to contain defenses on, so Deshaun Watson could go off in week five if the Jaguars give him time to operate in the pocket.
Jacksonville Jaguars Depth Chart
Betting Corner Texans -6
Spread: +/- 6
Moneyline: Texans -286, Jaguars +225
Spread: Texans -6
Moneyline: Texans -286
While I have a lot of belief in the Jaguars offense, I think the Texans have been waiting for a weak defense to show off their offense. Plus, their defense has the ability to contain the Jaguars offense. I think the money line and the spread for the Texans are fair values knowing that the Texans are due for a win after suffering a tough four-week schedule, and I think the Texans on the money line and spread are the best bets.
It is known that both of these teams have not scored a lot of points on offense this season mainly due to the defenses they have faced. However, I think books are overestimating how much these teams will score against each other. Uncommon to popular NFL betting strategy, I think this game will be in favor of the under for 54.5 total points.
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Fantasy Football Love/Hate
James Robinson has been a surprising top ten fantasy football running back this season. It can only get better against a defense that is near the bottom in rushing defense. Robinson always gets consistent touches in the backfield and should take advantage of this defense, making him an RB1 for week five.
Keelan Cole came out firing in the first two weeks by putting up 32.5 points. Since then, he has only brought in a total of 16.9 fantasy points. However, with Laviska Shenault Jr questionable for this week his target share is bound to go up. He is a WR3/flex option for week five.
Jordan Akins received a lot of fantasy attention after putting up 24.4 fantasy points through two weeks. However, he hardly gets any targets on the Texans’ passing offense. I would leave him on the bench in week five.