Houston Texans vs. Baltimore Ravens kicks off this Sunday at 1:00pm EST in Baltimore as a home game for the Ravens. Baltimore is currently a -10 favorite and -400 on the moneyline while the total is set at 44.5. Read on for more Houston Texans vs. Baltimore Ravens best bets and predictions as this game may be closer than the spread indicates.
Houston Texans Vs. Baltimore Ravens Prediction
It’s a new regime for the Houston Texans as they pushed all their chips in the middle of the table during the 2023 draft. After drafting their quarterback of the future in CJ Stroud with the second overall pick, they then shocked the nation by trading their future draft capitol for the Cardinals third overall pick. They then drafted Alabama’s Will Anderson Jr in an attempt to give their defense an instant boost in production.
As for the Ravens, a cultural change is in store heading into this season after hiring new OC Todd Monken. The personal under center remains firmly intact after re-signing star quarterback Lamar Jackson, now allowing him to get more involved in the pass game under Monken’s new system. This will be a drastic change of pace from previous years as the Ravens relied heavily on their ground game. They finished last year second in total rushing yards and seventh in rushing attempts.
Adjusting to a drastic change on offense may take some time to fully come together, especially when it’s against a shockingly stout defense. The Texans defense steadily improved throughout the season last year and now bring in a proven pass rusher in Will Anderson Jr. Monken’s system involves a clean pocket and for his playmakers to create separation, now potentially getting rushed by the Texans front seven.
As for the Texans offense, CJ Stroud makes his regular season debut after a few stints as the starter in the preseason. His decision making is less to be desired, but Stroud can put the ball on a rope and is more than capable of exposing a Ravens secondary that is as weak as it has been in recent years with Marlon Humphrey out due to injury. Should the offensive line hold up, the Texans will be in a good position to match the Ravens scoring pace.
Houston Texans Vs. Baltimore Ravens Betting Odds
Sep. 10, 12:00 PM Spread Moneyline Total 100% of staff picked HOU to cover the spread Odds updated September 10th, 2023, at 3:09 pm
HOU @ BAL
Sep. 10, 12:00 PM
100% of staff picked HOU to cover the spread
Odds updated September 10th, 2023, at 3:09 pm
Even after a productive offseason for the Texans, oddsmakers believe this is the Ravens game to lose as they opened Baltimore as a -10 favorite. Bettors have been torn on that belief, backing the Texans down to +9.5 in some shops as of writing. When it comes to betting on football, getting the key number is vital to long term success. By backing the Texans, I would take them no lower than +10.
As for the total, oddsmakers believe points will be scored at a moderate pace as they opened the number at 44. With so many question marks for both offenses heading into this contest, bettors have slightly sided with the under and have taken it down to 44.5. Factor in the history of Baltimore’s success on defense and an improved Houston unit and points may come at a premium.
Houston Texans Vs. Baltimore Ravens Key Matchups
Check out the key matchups and mismatches for Houston Texans vs Baltimore Ravens below.
Dameon Pierce vs Ravens Defensive Front Seven
While all eyes will be on rookie quarterback CJ Stroud, the Texans running back room will look to take center stage behind the production of Dameon Pierce. He is a three down back and can expose the Ravens injured second level should he get past the initial line.
Patiently waiting for Dameon Pierce to put some runs like this on display this year pic.twitter.com/RsOEMWGn4v
— BetMGM 🦁 (@BetMGM) September 4, 2023
Pierce may find himself with bigger running lanes than he has been accustomed to should CJ Stroud find success in the air. He suffered from consistently stacked boxes last year as the Texans lacked any sort of pass attack. With a stretched-out defense, Pierce can bulldoze his way up the middle for chunks at a time.
Ravens wideouts vs Texans Secondary
As previously mentioned, the Ravens will look to implement the pass more often under new OC Todd Monken. In order to help bolster the pass attack, they signed star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.
The Texans defensive improvement last year was correlated to their ability to limit the pass attack. Devin Stingley serves as a lockdown corner on one side of the field while their pass rush will force Lamar to throw into crowded areas. Should they revert to the run then this limits the number of possessions with a draining clock and plays closer to our two-score spread bet.